Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Amazon's Kindle Fire just nuked the tablet market: Winners and losers

ZDnet reporting:
Summary: Amazon just split the tablet market with Apple. The Kindle Fire is subsidized because you’ll shop more. Apple will stay high-end. Every tablet maker in the middle is screwed.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos took the stage Wednesday to unveil an arsenal of devices that are going to disrupt rivals like Barnes & Noble as well as Android tablet makers.
By rolling out the Kindle Touch (starting at $99), a regular Kindle ($79) and a Kindle Fire tablet ($199), Amazon introduced a subsidized model that only Apple can really match (statement). In a nutshell, we’re entering a near disposable e-reader/tablet era that will split the market between Amazon (consumption based profits) and Apple (high end brand profits). Every technology company caught in the middle is going to have some serious problems.

Here’s a look at the winners and losers in the wake of Amazon’s latest line-up of Kindles:

Winners: Amazon:
This tablet isn’t about hardware. It’s about consumption of Amazon services like music, streaming movies and apps. The Kindle Fire is an extension of Amazon’s store. How can Amazon price at $199 for a Wi-Fi tablet? Because you’ll shop more, consume more and be an Amazon Prime subscriber. The Kindle Touch and Fire equate to a lot more shopping and usage.

  • Android market share: Should Amazon’s heavily customized Android tablet take off it will go a long way to bolstering the operating system’s market position. Today the tablet market is all iPad all the time. Amazon will change that.
  • Apple: Amazon’s tablet isn’t an iPad killer by any stretch. In fact, Amazon’s aggressive pricing creates two tablet markets—high end and near disposable. Apple can hold its pricing. So-called iPad killers won’t be able to hold the market. In other words, Amazon and Apple just split the tablet market. There are $199 tablets (Fire) and $499 tablets (iPad). Anyone in the middle is toast.

Losers: Android tablets: If HP’s TouchPad fire sale ruined the Android tablet market, Amazon just killed it. A color tablet at $199 will kill pricing for Android tablets. Rest assured, Amazon will cut prices later. In other words, $99 is the new price point in just a few months. It’s going to be ugly for select hardware makers. Here’s a scenario: You can buy a Kindle Touch (starting at $99) and a Kindle Fire tablet for under $300 and still undercut most tablet makers... and Nook etc 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

How David Bradley and Justin Smith Saved 'The Atlantic'

adweek reporting:
...The Atlantic’s change in fortune is impressive by today’s publishing industry standards, but it’s all the more so considering the periodical, a 154-year-old journal on politics, culture, science, tech, and world affairs, belongs to a small group of so-called “thought-leader” publications like The New Yorker and The New Republic that are better known for their intellectual contributions than their commercial value. By rethinking everything about the company, however, Smith found a way to make that pay. Think Silicon Valley, but without the free food and massages. (Smith did away with perks like free bagels in the mornings.) “We don’t have football machines, but we filter for entrepreneurial talent,” Smith says.
He wanted to make The Atlantic a place where the traditional wall between the editorial and business sides could be broken down, but in a way that would encourage innovation, not stifle journalistic independence. In a show of transparency, Smith, with Bradley, started giving employees financial information at quarterly town hall meetings. He created joint editorial and business groups to incubate new ideas that have spawned sites like The Atlantic Wire, a news and opinion aggregator; and the new Atlantic Cities, the brand’s first stand-alone, single-topic site, devoted to urban issues.
Pivotal to the turnaround was Smith’s decision to lure Jay Lauf from a plum job as publisher of Condé Nast’s Wired. Lauf told salespeople it didn’t matter how much they sold in print or online dollars, as long as they met an overall revenue target. Digital advertising went from contributing 9 percent of ad revenue to a projected 45 percent this year. Print ad revenue, meanwhile, grew 24 percent in 2010 and is projected to be up 7 to 10 percent this year. Lauf said while his salespeople lured digital-focused advertisers by emphasizing digital properties, clients still wanted print. “A lot of the conventional wisdom was, you’re going to take your eye off print and you’re going to trade dollars for dimes,” he said. “It hasn’t cannibalized the print; it’s actually bolstered the print.”

Libraries struggle with e-books

mediashift reporting:
There are lots of considerations libraries must make: Which e-reader(s) will they adopt? After all, e-readers are tied to their associated bookstores -- Kindle to Amazon, Nook to Barnes & Noble, iPad to iBooks (even though the latter offers apps for the other e-readers). The e-readers not only have different features (black-and-white screens versus color, for example, touchscreens versus keypads) but their bookstores offer different selections. That's a big consideration when you're looking specifically for children's literature rather than just general interest ("grownup") fiction or non-fiction.
But the biggest problem, according to librarian Buffy Hamilton, author of the Unquiet Librarian blog, is DRM. Digital Rights Management is what restricts content from being shared across devices. It means that e-books from Amazon can't be read on Nooks, and e-books from Barnes & Noble won't work on Kindles. It means, oftentimes, that kids can't bring their own devices from home to use for library check-outs.
"The biggest challenge for libraries is trying to accommodate the demand for e-books in a world in which there is no standard DRM," Hamilton said in a recent interview. "While services like Overdrive provide e-book checkout that's friendly to multiple devices (that could be owned by the library or by students themselves) and allow you to track circulation stats, the cost is prohibitive for many school libraries; in addition, the terms of service with Overdrive no longer provide you an option to move your purchased e-books to another platform should you decide to change from Overdrive to another vendor, which basically means you'd lose your investment in your e-book collection."
That's what the state of Kansas faced when it terminated its contract with Overdrive, which highlights the fact that when it comes to digital content, more often than not what we own -- both libraries and consumers -- isn't the content itself but a license to access it. Those licensing rules often restrict lending and sharing altogether, particularly between consumers. But even libraries are finding some of the new licensing policies onerous.

Listening to Digital Chatter by Audience, Not Keywords

adweek reporting:
Hey brands, want to know what your audience is buzzing about when they’re not buzzing about you? Communications firm Porter Novelli has a new tool out today that it says will make that easier.
Called TrendingTarget, the service is similar to a slew of social media monitoring products that listen to and analyze publicly available social media posts from consumers. But the company said the one key difference is that it organizes digital chatter around target audiences, not keywords.
Say you’re a retailer interested in listening to online buzz about your company, conventional monitoring would likely start by searching for keywords, hashtags, or brand names that your target audience would chat about.
But Porter Novelli said its approach is to first use publicly available information to assemble an online sample of a target consumer group (from moms to Michele Bachmann fans to outdoor enthusiasts). Then it tracks and analyzes the full range of digital conversation and displays the information on an online dashboard that shows real-time and historical trending topics, as well as sample tweets. (It only includes Twitter for now but plans to expand to other social channels later this year.)
“What’s powerful about an audience-first approach is that you don’t have to guide the tool; instead, the tool guides you,” said Gary Stockman, CEO of Porter Novelli. “In keyword search you have to anticipate what the audience is talking about: your product, brand, your competitor’s product, your competitor’s brand. You wind up with these exhaustive lists of keywords. Unfortunately, if you haven’t anticipated what the audience might be talking about, you might not hear what they’re saying.”
By listening to the full range of an audience’s conversations, he said, you not only know when they’re talking about your company, but you also know when they’re talking about a competitor or interesting trends that might help you make inroads for future online conversations or marketing campaigns.

Longer Tweets Generate More Data

HuBLogSpot reporting: Over the course of the last few years of presenting data about Twitter, I've been asked a few common questions that, at the time, I didn't have the data to answer. One of the most common questions asked has been regarding click-through-rates (CTR).
I started by analyzing the length of 200,000 link-containing tweets as well as the CTR the links in those tweets generated. I calculated CTR as the number of clicks on a link divided by the number of followers the user had when he/she tweeted it.
What I found was a little surprising. Up to about 130 characters, as the length of the tweet increased, so did the CTR.
The takeaway here is pretty straightforward. If you want more clicks on the content you post to Twitter, use longer tweets, but don't surpass 130 characters.
So it seems as though Twitter users are more likely to click on links in tweets if they're accompanied by something else, such as a description of the link. When publishing content to Twitter, choose your characters wisely, and use that space to encourage others to click the links you post by including an enticing description or teaser of the content you're linking to.
Read more:

Friday, September 23, 2011

The Guardian and Independent launch Facebook apps reporting: The Guardian and Independent have become the first UK newspapers to launch a new style Facebook app, unveiled at the social media giant's annual F8 conference in London last night (22 September).

Both are a "new class of apps", according to Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and "have the ability not only to change the way we think about news but have the ability to change the way the whole news industry works".

The Guardian and Independent are two of 33 European media brands to have partnered with Facebook to launch the apps. The European list also includes audio platform SoundCloud and international news outlets such as News Corp-owned iPad newspaper the Daily and the Washington Post.

Both the Guardian and the Independent apps are quite different, with the Guardian's, which can be viewed here, located as an app within Facebook and the Independent app sitting on the newspaper's site.

"As we worked with different news organisations there were two camps: people that wanted to bring the social experience onto their sites, like Yahoo [News] and the Independent; and those that wanted the social news experience on Facebook, like Guardian, the Washington Post and the Daily," director of Facebook's platform partnerships Christian Hernandez told has surpassed the 3m unique browser mark for the first time ever, according to the latest ABC audit for August.

The site, which ranks the second most popular online news source after Mail Online, according to ABC, recorded an unprecedented 3.06m daily average unique browsers for August, up almost 9% on July. According to a Guardian News & Media spokeswoman, the title’s live and in-depth coverage of the English riots was a major factor in achieving the record-breaking figure.
The site, which ranks the second most popular online news source after Mail Online, according to ABC, recorded an unprecedented 3.06m daily average unique browsers for August, up almost 9% on July.
According to a Guardian News & Media spokeswoman, the title’s live and in-depth coverage of the English riots was a major factor in achieving the record-breaking figure.

43% of Twitter Users Access Twitter From a Mobile Phone

HubSpotBlog reporting: The latest data on mobile phone usage is out, and the numbers show that mobile isn't slowing down. And where inbound marketing is concerned, some of the key mobile data centers around how people are using their phones to access content and social media.
MarketingCharts' mobile research has found that people are increasingly using their mobile phones to access content on browsers, apps, and social networks:
  • In March 2011, nearly 39% of US mobile subscribers were browsing the internet using their mobile device. That's up by 2.2 percentage points from just 3 months prior.
  • Mobile apps are almost as popular as browsers; 37% of subscribers used downloaded apps.
  • Subscribers are also increasingly using social networks on their phones. In March, 27.3% indicated they used a social network on their mobile phone, up from 24.7% just 3 months prior.
Content usage on mobile phones resized 600
The research also provided some fascinating data on people who are users of LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. Although the vast majority of these people indicated they access these social networks on their desktop, they showed various rates of usage on their mobile phones.
Read more:

@ F8: Facebook’s Mobile Strategy Running In Place

paidcontent reporting:
With only a morning to highlight its work for the year and pitch thousands of developers on why they should continue to think of Facebook as a platform for their applications, the company clearly needs to focus on its bread-and-butter: the PC-based Facebook experience. But while Zuckerberg did demonstrate how the new timeline feature would look on a mobile device, he didn’t elaborate on whether or not we were seeing the mobile Web implementation of that experience or an app-based experience.
This is important because Facebook is believed to be working on HTML5 versions of its services that would allow it to bypass apps altogether in favor of the mobile Web, a development which could be a tipping point for the apps-versus-mobile-Web that we’re all getting a little sick of discussing. The lack of any significant mobile update at F8 gives credence to the notion that Facebook doesn’t see as much value in continuing to develop its traditional mobile strategy.
It’s not hard to imagine Facebook gearing up for a separate mobile-focused event sometime in the near feature. Executives and partners were tight-lipped after Zuckerberg’s morning keynote, but the lack of focus on something as vital to Facebook’s future as its mobile strategy likely means that something big is around the corner.

@ F8: Facebook Unveils New Class Of Social Apps And Redesigned ‘Timeline’

paidcontent reporting:
Facebook unveiled a new version of its social-media platform Thursday designed to help media companies and social-application developers encourage Facebook users to share more details about their lives. The new Open Graph and several varieties of Facebook applications were joined by a redesigned version of the Facebook profile called the Timeline that CEO Mark Zuckerberg said would allow people to curate “the story of your life” on a single Facebook page.
The Timeline redesign will likely be jarring to Facebook’s famously change-averse users, but Zuckerberg and Facebook director of product management Chris Cox said that the idea was to allow people to create virtual scrapbooks of their lives through Facebook. Users will be able to sort their Timelines by certain pieces of content, such as clicking on button that will display all the photos taken of you in the last year. The new Timeline will be rolling out over the next several weeks, and it will be the home for a new set of social applications.
Facebook users are familiar with social games that allow them to brag about their progress or collaborate with their Facebook friends on certain achievements, but they’ll now be able to share other types of activity like the music they’re listening to or the “lifestyle” accomplishments in their lives, such as running five miles or visiting a new restaurant. Netflix (NSDQ: NFLX), Nike, Foodspotting, and Spotify are among the partners who will have applications based on the new version of Facebook’s Open Graph, which allows developers to build social applications on top of Facebook’s technology.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Will Ebooks Destroy the Democratizing Effects of Reading?

MIT technology review reporting:
Today Amazon announced that it is finally rolling out Kindle-compatible ebooks to public libraries in the U.S., a much-needed evolution of the dominant e-reading platform. But there's a larger problem that this development fails to address, and it's an issue exacerbated by every part of Amazon's business model.
Access to knowledge has long been seen as vital to the public interest -- literally, in economic parlance, a "public good" -- which is why libraries have always been supported through taxes and philanthropy. (Carnegie's decision to fund 2,509 of them around the turn of the century being an especially notable example of this.)
I challenge anyone reading this to recall his or her earliest experiences with books -- nearly all of which, I'm willing to bet, were second-hand, passed on by family members or purchased in that condition. Now consider that the eBook completely eliminates both the secondary book market and any control that libraries -- i.e. the public -- has over the copies of a text it has purchased.
Except under limited circumstances, eBooks cannot be loaned or resold. They cannot be gifted, nor discovered on a trip through the shelves of a friend or the local library. They cannot be re-bound and, unlike all the rediscovered works that literally gave birth to the Renaissance, they will not last for centuries. Indeed, publishers are already limiting the number of times a library can loan out an eBook to 26.
If the transition to eBooks is complete -- and with libraries being among the most significant buyers of books, it now seems inevitable -- the flexibility of book ownership will be gone forever. Knowledge, in as much as books represent it, will belong to someone else.
Worse yet, there is the problem of the e-reader itself. This issue may be resolved by falling prices of e-readers, but there remains the possibility that the demands of profitability will drive makers of e-readers to simply set a floor on the price they're willing to charge for one and attempt to continually innovate toward tablet-like functionality in order to justify that price.
Unlike books, which are one of the few media that do not require a secondary external device for playback, e-books put additional barriers between readers and knowledge. Some of those barriers, as I've mentioned, consist of Digital Rights Management and other attempts to use intellectual property laws as a kind of rent-seeking, but others are more subtle...

Comparing The New Aggregators: Flipboard, Pulse, Zite, Float And More

paidcontent reporting:
From Flipboard and Aol Editions, to Ongo and LinkedIn. Today, the rise of tablets and apps is changing how we gather and consume content.  A couple of apps have grabbed the headlines in recent months. Flipboard has closed over $60 million in funding and has a $200 million valuation. More recently, Zite was snapped up by CNN. Even Google (NSDQ: GOOG) is jumping on this bandwagon, based on reports of Google Propeller designed so Android and iOS users can curate content.
But is there a business in new-style aggregation?
Probably not for all of these or many of the versions we have yet to see. But the blend of style with the right devices and the right business model offers a decent foundation. Flipboard CEO Mike McCue thinks his company can do it with advertising revenue and, for now, all within Apple’s operating system. The Washington Post ( Co.‘s Trove is banking on mixing advertising revenue with being completely cross platform. Others, like and Ongo are counting on a blend of subscription fees and advertising. What they all have going for them: a plethora of information and sources and, thanks to HTML5 and other innovations, formats that are far more pleasing to use than the batches of linked headlines that keep some away from RSS. It also helps that they have consumer-friendly names, some more so than others, and an easy threshold for use.
For consumers, there are now so many of these next-generation RSS readers that it can be daunting to keep them straight. But they have distinct differences. Some curate content with an algorithm, while others use a team of editors. Some have made partnerships with publishers, while some are charging ahead without them. And there are other differences too, in areas like customization, sharing and price... Paywall: 12 Percent Of Subs Are International

paidcontent reporting:
Part of the bet that the New York Times Co.  made when it began building the metered paywall for the was that the audience was larger than just northern, east coast readers. In a conversation at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia conference, CEO Janet Robinson said that the company is seeing subscribers from across the nation, and is even getting some international acceptance as well.
...That could augur well for plans to roll out a similar paywall for the NYTCo’s International Herald Tribune site this year. On the downside, however, Robinson reiterated a point she made during July’s Q2 earnings call that ad sales were looking softer through Q3.
Robinson declined to provide an update on the number of digital subscribers, which was 224,000 in Q2, saying that they only report those figures on a quarterly basis. But she did offer some additional color on the number paywall subs. In particular, about 88 percent are domestic and 12 percent are international.
There are also 57,000 subs collectively on Amazon’s Kindle or and Barnes & Noble’s Nook, while the carmaker Lincoln’s sponsorship program that offers free total digital acccess to the’s most engaged users was 100,000. About 758,000 are home delivery subs that have linked digital accounts. “That’s well over a million, including actual direct-paid subscribers or sponsored users,” Robinson said. “That’s quite an impressive number.”

With WSJ Social, the Wall Street Journal is rethinking distribution of its content…on Facebook

The most recent stats could be, for news outfits, pretty grim: Americans spend 22.5 percent of their time online visiting social networks and blogs, and only 2.6 percent of their time learning about current events. And among the social sites, of course, none is more time-consuming than Facebook: In May alone, the site sucked up over 53 billion minutes of Americans’ time.
For media organizations, the takeaway is clear: “You can’t rely on users coming to you anymore,” says Maya Baratz, head of new products at the Wall Street Journal. With that in mind, today the Journal is launching a product that, it’s betting, will allow it to come to its users: WSJ Social, a Facebook application. Within the app, users have the ability to subscribe to different streams of content, curated both by fellow users and by the paper itself. (All Journal content that’s shared — or Liked — by a user within the app will also be pushed to that user’s main Facebook profile newsfeed.) The app creates, essentially, a publication that is personalized by way of selective social curation.
With WSJ Social, the Journal is purposely “navigating the content within the app around people,” Baratz told me, and making “every user an editor”; the app, in large part, she says, is about “elevating the role of people as curators of content.” The end result: “When you walk into the app, you have this very curated publication,” Baratz says — one that could, if done right, provide users with a nice mix of personalization and serendipity.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Aptara Releases Findings of its Third Annual Digital Publishing Survey

GoodEreading reports: As digital publishing gains a wider acceptance, companies like Aptara go into greater detail in gathering data on the influential reach of electronic books. Aptara, which bills itself as a “digital publishing solutions pioneer,” released its survey yesterday on the true scope of e-reading.
According to the data’s highlights, it comes as no surprise that Amazon is still leading the forefront of digital ebook distribution. One of the major surprises, though, was that many publishers are still not tapping into the wealth of their back list titles; this could be one of the reason more and more authors are attempting to regain control of the rights to their older—and often out of print—works in an effort to revitalize interest in the author and in the works by self-publishing them to electronic platforms. It’s confounding that many publishers are willing to overlook digital publishing’s reach by not posting these older titles to the existing digital retailers.
The forty-page document from Aptara, available from their site, details where the money is being spent in electronic publishing, as well as gives a clear indication of which platforms are doing the bulk of the business. As this is the third year that Aptara has produced this survey, the results are not only comprehensive, they are also markers of the flow of trends in the industry over time.
The introduction to this year’s survey had this to reveal:
“Though the eBook market is expanding exponentially, it is still young, with unpredictable dynamics and an immature infrastructure. For most publishers, this early-stage market reality results in production growing pains and business model challenges, often overshadowed by the allure of eBook sales figures. While one out of five eBook publishers generates more than 10% of their sales from eBooks, eBook production, promotion, distribution, and sales are still far from reaching their full potential. eBooks’ market opportunity is vast, particularly for the majority of publishers that are still eluded by production efficiencies and meaningful revenues. Publishers still see eBook formats, distribution channels, quality, and digital rights management (DRM) as serious challenges—but these concerns have gradually eased since our first survey—an encouraging sign that the eBook market is beginning to mature.”

HuffPost's New eBook Examines the Successful Fight to Repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell

HuffPost reporting: We are used to commemorating the anniversaries of long-past civil rights milestones. It seems like it's often the 40th anniversary of this great leap forward, or the 30th anniversary of that hard-fought victory. But the struggle for equality and a more perfect union is also happening here and now. Indeed, today is one of those milestones that we'll surely look back on and celebrate in the years to come.
That's because today, September 20th, 2011, finally marks the end of the deeply flawed policy known as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" -- which for the last 17 years allowed gays and lesbians to serve in the military... as long as they didn't admit they were gay or lesbian. I'm happy to announce it's also the publication day of our second eBook, How We Won: Progressive Lessons from the Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Aaron Belkin's compelling exploration of the long road to repealing DADT.
Along with being a HuffPost blogger, Belkin is a Professor of Political Science at San Francisco State University and the founder and director of the Palm Center, which The Advocate called one of the most effective gay and lesbian rights groups in the country.
In How We Won, he examines the victory from all angles. How did it happen? Why did it take 17 years? Which tactics were effective and which ones weren't? What lessons can be learned and carried over to the fights against other injustices?

Immersive Labs develops Digital Display Recognition for advertising

TechCrunch reporting:
New York TechStars 2011 alumnus Immersive Labs is announcing its $810K in seed funding today...
Immersive Labs is working on futuristic advertising displays like those in the well known book and film Minority Report, which tailor advertising to the individual viewer. Immersive Labs’ digital signs use cameras and facial recognition technology to determine viewer characteristics like gender, age, distance and time spent viewing the ad in order to then serve up the advertising that would be most relevant (see the demo video below).
The targeting technology has shown an over 60% increase in viewer attention time during pilot tests, according to CEO Jason Sosa. 

Stipple Marketplace enables publishers to monetize any image on their website

Poynter reporting: A new image licensing service called Stipple Marketplace enables advertisers to tag parts of images with links to their products, enabling customers to make purchases by clicking on the tags. ”Third party publishers can also take the branded photo and place it on their sites as well, earning themselves money in the process simply by using that branded photo pre-loaded with smart image tagging,” writes Sherilynn Macale. Depending on the arrangement, publishers are paid when a user hovers over the tag or clicks on it. (Stipple’s website has an example of a tagged image.) Advertisers and publishers can tag images from a catalog that includes news, sports, celebrity, entertainment and stock photos. The service effectively makes any content producer an advertising partner, blurring the distinction between editorial illustration and advertising’s strategy of emphasizing content niches seems to be working

paidcontent reporting:
The value of being a weekly print brand in the online era has been in doubt for years, but Time magazine believes that it can retain relevance by not just emphasizing the Time the brand online, but ramping up attention a lot more on news niches, creating blogs around key topics to maintain web traffic between the spikes related to its traditional coverage of big events. Gadget-and-gaming Techland, politically minded Swampland, military news Battleland and nine other blogs infuse this version of, with more to come.
Before the end of the year, plans to add an entertainment blog, an opinion site with guest bloggers and possibly ones about society and family, as well as criminal justice. The moves are part of the “vertical strategy,” which began about two years ago, said Jim Frederick, the site’s managing editor, in an interview with paidContent.
Time also says that digital revenue is up 12 percent so far, though it declined to provide dollar figures. The magazine’s executives point to sponsorships from Goldman Sachs and Ally Financial’s launch sponsorship of’s finance vertical Moneyland and Starbucks (NSDQ: SBUX) for the launch of the LightBox photography blog on Tumblr.
“In developing the vertical strategy, we decided to pinpoint areas of reader and advertiser interest, blow them out as mini-publications in their own right,” Frederick said. “The idea was to get writers who can speak to Tech enthusiasts for Techland or personal finance fans at Moneyland, and forge new readerships, while still embracing our core audience and feeling familiar to our Time loyalists, too.””
...Beyond the site: In addition to the website verticals, Time is looking to other digital extensions. A month before the July rollout of Time magazine’s all-access iPad app subscription plan, it introduced a companion item on the device: The Page: Mark Halperin 2012 App for iPad, a free, separate app that offers political analysis from the veteran political reporter with ExxonMobil as the exclusive sponsor at its launch.
And from the PC and mobile screen, the magazine is hoping that connected TVs will provide another opportunity to plant the brand’s flag. Its first free widget on the Samsung TV platform has seen over 25,000 app downloads in the first two weeks. The Samsung TV app has video and photos in the full screen mode and it can also be used widget mode to read the Time content while watching live TV on connected Samsung sets. At the moment, people may not be clamoring to read the news on their TVs, but if the connected set is the intersection of traditional media and new, Time wants to be ready.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Condé Nast Publisher Moves: Kremins to Condé Nast Traveler, Myers to Brides, Bloom to Lucky

Sept. 16, Condé Nast CEO Chuck Townsend and president Bob Sauerberg announced the shuffling of these executives:     ♦Carolyn Kremins, Brides VP/publisher since Oct. 2009,  becomes Condé Nast Traveler VP/publisher.
    ♦Michelle Myers, Lucky VP/publisher since Feb. 2010, becomes Brides VP/publisher.
    ♦Marcy Bloom, Gentlemen's Quarterly associate publisher since Dec. 2006, becomes Lucky VP/publisher.
    ♦Chris Mitchell,  Condé Nast Traveler publisher since Feb. 2009 becomes Gentlemen's Quarterly publisher.
    ♦Pete Hunsinger, GQ publisher since July 2003, becomes Golf Digest Cos. president/publisher.
Separately, Brides editor-in-chief (since 1995) Millie Bratten was replaced by Marie Claire executive editor Anne Fulenwider. Bratten, who had survived the October 2009 CN consolidation of Brides with Modern Bride and Elegant Bride, ended a 35-year stint with the magazine.
At Golf Digest, publishing director (since Sept. 2004) Tom Bair and Golf World publisher Laura Sequenzia (since May 2009) now report to Hunsinger.
Brides' +0.7% is the best Jan.-Oct. 2011-versus-2010 advertising page differential among the affected magazines.  CNT is -0.5%; GD, -3.1%; and GQ and Lucky are both -6.0%. 

Self-publish your books for sale in the Kindle Store

From Amazon:
With Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) you can self-publish your books on the Amazon Kindle Store. It's free, fast, and easy. Books self-published through KDP can participate in the 70% royalty program and are available for purchase on Kindle devices and Kindle apps for iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, PC, Mac, Blackberry, and Android-based devices. With KDP, you can self-publish books in English, German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian and specify pricing in US Dollars, Pounds Sterling, and Euros. You will also find useful information on our active community forum.
Jay Rosen in PressThink:
“We’re not as far along as we should be. I’d give us a C-minus.” My talk to the Personal Democracy Forum, June 7, 2011. You can watch it here.
I address you today in a mood of frustration. For in the development of pro-am journalism, we are not as far along as we should be. I’d give us a C-minus.By “pro-am” I mean exactly that: a hybrid form in which pro journalists and their users work together in the production of high quality editorial goods. 
My plan of attack: First, I am going to explain this miserable grade, the C-minus. Then I will identify the progress we have made. And I will close with what we need to do to move ahead. It took me a while to understand this myself, but I want to isolate an important fact at the outset. Professional journalism has been optimized for low participation. Up until a few years ago, the “job” of the user was simply to receive the news and maybe send a letter to the editor. There was a logic to this. Journalists built their practices on top of a one-way, one-to-many, broadcasting system. Most of us understand that by now. What we haven’t quite appreciated is how the logic of the one way, one-to-many pipes sunk deeply, not only into professional practice, but into professional selves.
And so when I talk to journalists about the Internet I try to get them to picture something that they had long ago naturalized: the arrangement of the audience in space under conditions of mass media. At the deepest roots of their thinking they had accepted an image of the people “out there” as connected up to big media, but disconnected or atomized from one another, as well silent and inert, and powerless to make media.

We Have No Idea Who’s Right: Criticizing “he said, she said” journalism at NPR

Jay Rosen writing:
Apparently, NPR people do not understand what the critique of he said, she said is all about. It’s not about editorializing. Or taking sides. It’s failing to do the reporting required to shed light on conflicting truth claims.
First I’m going to tell you what happened; then I’m going to comment on it.
I set my clock radio to NPR because I am a fan and loyal listener. A week ago I woke to this report about new rules for licensing abortion clinics in Kansas. The report stood out for me as an exquisite example of that dubious genre known as “he said, she said” journalism, which I’ve been complaining about for some time.  My 2009 essay on it attempts to explain the persistence of this form; it also gives a definition:
“He said, she said” journalism means…
  • There’s a public dispute.
  • The dispute makes news.
  • No real attempt is made to assess clashing truth claims in the story, even though they are in some sense the reason for the story. (Under the “conflict makes news” test.)
  • The means for assessment do exist, so it’s possible to exert a factual check on some of the claims, but for whatever reason the report declines to make use of them.
  • The symmetry of two sides making opposite claims puts the reporter in the middle between polarized extremes.
  • ...My complaint is not the usual one that you probably get: biased reporting. No. This is he said, she said reporting, one of the lowest forms of journalism in existence, in which the NPR reporter washes her hands of determining what is true. The new Kansas regulations may be a form of harassment, intended to make life as difficult as possible for abortion providers in that state. Or, alternatively, these rules may be sane, rational, common sense, sound policy: just normal rule-making by responsible public officials.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hulu Has Failed In Europe Because It Wanted To Own Ad Sales, RTL CEO Says

paidcontent reporting:
The RTL chief executive, Gerhard Zeiler, said on Thursday the broadcaster had not done a deal with Hulu, the online TV service, because its US owners would not allow the company to sell its own advertising.
Zeiler told the Royal Television Society Cambridge Convention that aggregators such as Hulu, which is owned by US media companies News Corporation (NSDQ: NWS), NBC (NSDQ: CMCSA) Universal, Disney (NYSE: DIS) and private equity company Providence Equity Partners, would fail unless they allow broadcasters to promote their channels rather than individual programmes on their video-on-demand service. Hulu is yet to launch in Europe.
“Two years ago Hulu came to Europe and after two years they have not done any deal because all the broadcasters have said ‘we won’t let you turn our [advertising] euros or pounds into cents’,” Zeiler said.
“We said, ‘we want to sell our own advertising, we want to determine the price’ and that’s not something they [Hulu] could to deliver to us.
“We can’t allow someone else to disintermediate. In a universe with one thousand different choices you need guidance.”
He added that channel brands are more vital then ever in a multichannel environment, where new distribution platforms such as internet TV are taking root. RTL, the former owner of Channel 5 in the UK, is Europe’s largest advertiser-funded commercial broadcaster, with 41 TV networks and 31 radio stations in 10 countries. “We need to strengthen our megabrands,” Zeiler said. “When we change programmes from one channel to the other in the same time slot it’s a completely different audience.”

@ pcAds: Hearst Wants Tablet Magazines To Adopt Movie, TV Pricing

paidcontent reporting
New device opportunities should allow Hearst to drive its digital revenue model away from advertising reliance, and toward 50/50 equivalence with readers’ payments, the publisher’s president, David Carey, told the paidContent Advertising conference.
The next wave is almost entirely focused on more consumer revenue - and the early stages look good,” Carey said. “The words ‘paid’ and ‘content’, connected, are my two favourite words in the English language. The technology enables it.”
Cable TV-style recurring revenue is key. “Tablets allow us to get into continuous service monthly bill,” Carey said. “We’re selling a lot at $1.99 a month—$24 a year—which is often more than we get in print. We don’t have to get in to this funny process after a year where we ask readers, ‘Are you sure you want to continue with us?’”
Amongst the device opportunities, turns out tablet magazines is also a long-tail business. “Approximately 40 percent of single-copy sales occur after the physical copy has gone off the newsstand,” Carey said. “We have near-term consumers, we’re getting very good long tail activity - that’s totally new for us.”
That prompts Hearst to think in a more long-term fashion than the monthly publishing cycle…
“The magazine industry can learn a lot from the movie business and the windows they have for their content… theatrical, international, premium, pay-per-view and then it ends up on the Turner channel at 3am,” Carey told panel moderator Pam Horan.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

5 things journalists need to know about new Facebook subscription feature

Poynter reporting:
Facebook’s new Subscribe button, a major feature for the social networks, has important implications for journalists.
Until today the only way to connect with someone’s personal Facebook profile was to become “friends.” But now there’s another option. People can subscribe to see your public updates in their news feed, without adding you as a friend.
This is a big shift in the way Facebook works. Here are five key things journalists should understand about it.
1. First, you have to opt-in. You must visit this Facebook page to enable subscriptions to your account. Only then can other Facebook users visit your profile and subscribe.
2. Many journalists may find they no longer need a separate Facebook Page. Pages had two primary advantages over profiles: People could subscribe to page updates (by liking them) without being your Facebook friend, and there was no limit to the number of fans you could have.
While users are still limited to having 5,000 personal friends on Facebook, they can now have an unlimited number of subscribers. That enables a journalist or other public figure to build large followings around their personal profile without worrying about the friend limit anymore.
There are two possible reasons you might want to keep your Facebook Page: You already have such a strong following there you don’t want to disrupt it, or you need to use the apps and extra tabs that Pages allow you to add.
3. Facebook continues to encourage publicness. By creating a distinct audience for public updates, Facebook is motivating users to share more things publicly.
People who have a lot of subscribers may feel pressure to share most things publicly, and just keep a few personal updates private for friends and family. If that happens, Facebook Search will become a more useful tool for journalists and others who want to search public posts like they do on Twitter.
4. Each subscriber controls how much they see from you. This could be a good thing or a bad thing for journalists. But each person can choose to see all of your updates, most of your updates or only the “most important” as determined by Facebook...

Hearst To Convert All Sites to HTML5

Niemanlab reporting:
NEW YORK—Hearst Magazines is aiming to improve its digital strategy through the integration of HTML5, the company announced plans early Tuesday to implement the platform on the majority of its websites through out the fourth quarter of 2011 and into 2012, according to Mark Weinberg, vice president of programming and product strategy for Hearst Digital Media.
The platform’s integration with the brand has begun with a complete redesign and relaunch of, which was once named one of the worst magazine websites on the Internet. The newly revamped site, which went live five days ago and was designed over the last year, is now compatible with the majority of all commonly used devices.
“This project forms the basis for the kind of site structure that we expect to roll out to the rest of the network over the next six to 18 months,” Weinberg told reporters during a walk through of the new website in the Hearst App Lab. “We have a number of sites that we’re in the process of redesigning and relaunching now and they will be relaunched fundamentally on the same kind of code base of HTML5 and they will designed to be multi-platform. The kind of innovations we’ve baked into the Good Housekeeping relaunch will drive where we go with the rest of the network sites.”
According to a spokesperson for Hearst, the titles acquired in the Hachette deal will be the first properties to undergo the change, with the company’s staple brands to follow.

The Sun looks to brand extensions to build loyalty scheme

newmediaage reporting:
The Sun is looking to develop online products and services around the brand as part of long-term plans to develop its Sun Perks loyalty scheme.
The News International-owned tabloid relaunched Sun Perks last weekend to focus on a 10-week Christmas loyalty programme, with a campaign running across TV, online, radio and press, fronted by a turkey character, Perky.
Those signed up for the Christmas loyalty scheme can redeem both products and retail discounts for points collected in The Sun newspaper.
According to Rob Painter, marketing director for The Sun, the long-term aim is to build The Sun’s own products and services into a loyalty programme, rather than just trading media value or vouchers with commercial partners.
The Christmas phase features 170 products, from toys and games to dvds, as well as retail vouchers and turkeys.
“Friends” of News International are also being approached by the publisher’s commercial team, discussing partnership in the loyalty programme as a possible extension of commercial “solutions”.
“If and when it rolls out to the next phase, we want to be using more of our own services and products,” said Painter. “For example, customers might get rewarded with money in their bingo account or extra points for [fantasy football] Dream Team. We could also link to Sun promotions: things like priority booking for a holiday, or a 10% discount off a Sun holiday.”
He added that two to three other such Sun products were in development.
“It’s about expanding the footprint of The Sun brand, looking at products and services you can offer digitally, and if you can provide a currency that runs all across these systems,” he said.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Amazon e-book subscriptions: Don't hold your breath

ConsumerReports reporting:
Amazon is trying to sell publishers on licensing their Kindle e-book titles on an all-you-can-read basis to members of Amazon Prime, the website’s premium service. The plan is no surprise: The notion of unlimited e-reading has great appeal, and Amazon already offers unlimited streaming video (albeit from a relatively small library) to Prime customers, who pay $79 a year for free two-day shipping and other perks.
But e-book rental doesn't have much chance of happening, at least soon.
Like a good deal of what Amazon conceives, all-you-can-read e-books may be an idea that’s come before its time—if that time even comes. The plan faces two significant hurdles:
• Publishers are leery. As the Wall Street Journal reported this morning, publishers worry that the plan, even if it is offered as part of a $79 sub, may diminish the perceived value of e-books among non-subscribers. They fret that bookworms may start to compare the $10 or so they’re paying for a hot new Kindle title favorably against the $15 or more that the print version might cost but weigh it unfavorably against its perceived cost for Amazon Prime customers—which might be seen as zero.
But the reasons run deeper than that. Amazon’s all-you-can-read proposals to publishers also include exclusivity clauses that prevent or at least limit the ability to make similar deals with other booksellers. There’s no evidence—surprisingly—that those other sellers, such as Barnes & Noble and Apple, are ready to pitch such plans. But signing an all-you-can-read deal with Amazon that shuts out the possibility of signing another one elsewhere would hardly help relations between publishers and Amazon’s competitors. And publishers still rely on Amazon's competitors not only to sell their e-books but, in the case of B&N, their physical books, too.
• Authors may object...

A look at today’s 9/11 anniversary newspaper visuals

Charles Apple reporting:
TODAY’S MOST ASTOUNDING 9/11 IMAGES Just because I’m picking then papers to make up my “most astounding” list, don’t let that seem like an insult to the papers that didn’t make the list. As you’ll see, many, many more than just ten papers did fabulous work today:

Monday, September 12, 2011

As Print Book Revenues Plunge, E-Books Aren’t Making It Up

paidcontent reporting:
Looking at book publishing statistics and noting huge e-book growth is fun—but not in the case of the new statistics released by the Association of American Publishers, which show print book revenues substantially down and the 161 percent growth in e-book revenues in the first six months of the year unable to make up for that loss. Update: I corrected the net revenue figures below.
The AAP’s monthly reports represent sales figures from 79 publishers reporting data in four markets (trade, K-12, higher education and professional/scholarly publishing). 15 of those publishers also provided data on e-books. These stats are less comprehensive than those provided by BookStats, the AAP’s joint venture with the Book Industry Study Group, which launched last month and includes data from nearly 2,000 publishers. Early BookStats reports showed that book sales grew between 2008 and 2010.
Total sales of adult hardcover, paperback and mass market paperback books were $1.23 billion for the first six months of 2011, compared to $1.65 billion in the first six months of 2010—a 25.9 percent decrease.
Sales from adult hardcover, paperback and mass market; children’s hardcover and paperback; downloadable audiobooks and e-books—were $2.19 billion for the first half of 2011, compared to $2.39 billion for the first half of 2010. I apologize for the error.

It’s Time To Stop Using Downloads As The Key Metric For Apps Success

paidcontent reporting:
The mobile apps industry is suffering from download-milestone overkill. Developers and publishers boast about how many times their apps have been downloaded on the various app stores, while analysts and the store owners themselves use downloads as a key metric to gauge the success of those stores. While these figures aren’t meaningless, they’re only a guide to potential success.
There are two new pieces of research that illustrate the problem. First, research2guidance, which has published a report comparing the average daily downloads per app on various stores, taking Apple’s App Store as the benchmark. The report claims that “apps on Nokia’s Ovi Store had 2.5 times higher download numbers in Q2 2011 compared to apps on Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) App Store”: 160% more average daily downloads per app.
Microsoft’s Windows Marketplace was 80% up on the App Store by the same analysis, with RIM’s BlackBerry App World up 43%. Google’s Android Market was down slightly (5%), while stores from Samsung, LG (SEO: 066570), GetJar and Palm (NYSE: HPQ) were further down.
Download numbers are no guide to how much money is being made. They don’t tell you how many apps are being sold, and they can only give an indication of the potential an app has for making money from in-app purchases and/or advertising.
This isn’t a pro-Apple anti-everyone-else viewpoint. There are plenty of companies trumpeting iOS download figures with no indication of how many people are actively using their apps, or how much money they’re making. Meanwhile, all the evidence suggests that while some apps can generate monster downloads on the App Store, many many more aren’t being downloaded at all.
The second current piece of research that filters into this discussion comes from analyst firm Ovum’s new report on mobile apps. It predicts that Android will overtake iPhone this year for the total number of app downloads – 8.1bn to 6bn – with the gap widening to 21.8bn and 11.6bn by 2016.
These are big, meaty figures that are likely to fuel many more “Android overtaking iPhone” headlines in the days ahead. Yet downloads only tell part of the story again: Ovum thinks that in 2016, iPhone will generate $2.86bn of paid app revenues compared to Android’s $1.5bn...

BostonGlobe.Com Launches Today; Shifts To Paying Subscribers Only Oct. 1

paidcontent reporting:
One of the most unusual efforts to make money from a newspaper web site launches today in Boston, slightly less than a year after plans were announced. For the rest of September,, which went live overnight, will be open to registered users through a sponsored free trial. Come Oct. 1, most of the content from the second-largest New York Times Co. (NYSE: NYT) paper will be available only to print subscribers and those willing to pay $3.99 a week—$208 a year—for online-only access.
Unlike sites that have been open access until a “paywall” goes up, technically launches as a subscription-only site. But the same content has been free until now through regional news and info site, which will no longer will house the complete paper. Overall, Editor Martin Baron estimates that about three-fourths of the newspaper’s content will now only be available on
The goal is to keep high traffic by keeping it open, while developing for subscribers. still will have fresh newsroom-produced daily content, including 20 new blogs and breaking news, and will feature some articles from the newspaper. (Here’s the FAQ on
Baron describes it as “two different sites for two different kinds of reader—some understand journalism needs to be funded and paid for. Other people just won’t pay. We have a site fior them.”

Friday, September 9, 2011

How has social media changed the way newsrooms work?

BBC reporting:

For BBC News, social media currently has three key, highly valuable roles in our journalism:
• newsgathering - it helps us gather more, and sometimes better, material; we can find a wider ranges of voices, ideas and eyewitnesses quickly
• audience engagement - how we listen to and talk to our audiences, and allowing us to speak to different audiences - and
• a platform for our content - it's a way of us getting our journalism out there, in short form or as a tool to take people to our journalism on the website, TV or radio. It allows us to engage different and younger audiences.

The BBC already has a fair track record of inviting the audience to get involved in our journalism - web forums; debates; blogs and comments, and most recently incorporating comment within our website story pages, particularly on the live pages.
Lastly, social media shines a powerful light on all that we do. It can be uncomfortable at times but it is ultimately a great thing. It will help keep us all honest. Those traditional organisations who abandon those core values and aspirations will be found out - there is unrelenting examination of all we do - and those who don't live up to their values will quickly surrender their value to audiences in this new world.

Washington Post publisher Weymouth sees new media as ‘them,’ not ‘us’

Poynter reporting:

Washington Post Publisher Katharine Weymouth draws a big, bold line between “old media” like the Post and “new media” such as blogs and citizen journalists.
The Post is embracing the new “tools” of online journalism, but they don’t change who journalists are, what journalism is or how the Post does it, Weymouth said Wednesday as the keynote speaker of the Knight-Batten Awards symposium in Washington, D.C.
Weymouth made several points that advocate a progressive future for the Post. She told the audience of Washington journalists that all Post reporters should use social media to connect with their readers and that innovation is the job of every employee in the company.
The overall tone, however, was more combative toward what she labeled as “new media.” There was much talk about competition, but little about the benefits of collaboration. On some subjects Weymouth expressed views that were conservative or even a little curmudgeonly.
Later, she acknowledged that citizen journalism does have a place, not on equal footing with the Post but as a potential source for its reporting.
“Citizen journalists, armed with cellphones and Twitter accounts, are not the enemy. They are additional sources on the ground,” Weymouth said. “When used properly, their photos and words enrich our coverage and our readers’ understanding of the unfolding story.”

Online Video at Work: Here’s What You’re Watching

“Hey, it’s for work!” the new “I read it for the articles”?
According to this infographic, based on data from Harris Interactive, lots of us are watching online videos at work — and a good deal of them aren’t work-related.
The 3% who are watching porn probably isn’t surprising (and is most likely under-reported), but 4% are watching feature films? As Jerry Seinfeld might ask, “Who are these people?”
For some jobs, like midnight shift toll collector, this may be fine, but in most cases, it appears that people are hiding their work-time viewing. If you’re in the same boat, you might find some good tips here, like pretending to tie your shoe, putting your smartphone under the table and that old standby, going to the bathroom. Come to think of it, the latter might explain these recent stat

The future of TV is social, says Facebook’s Joanna Shields

newmediage reporting:
Speaking at this morning’s keynote at the IBC conference in Amsterdam, Shields laid out the social network’s vision of continuing to forge content partnerships with content creators and broadcasters as a way of evolving the social TV experience and driving diversity of revenue streams for both sides.
She said Facebook’s aim is to “complement” and “enhance” the TV viewing experience and help broadcasters extend their reach, rather than cannibalise their content.
By using Facebook’s Credits payment system around particular shows, broadcasters can increase their revenues, according to Shields. Production house Endemol’s reality entertainment show Big Brother, which has already launched a voting service using Facebook’s voting system in Germany, has seen a 10% uplift in how many people vote as a result of Facebook Credits, according to Shields.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Abramson faces toughest test of any NYT boss

Reflections of a Newsosaur: Jill Abramson will have a tougher job than any of her predecessors when she becomes executive editor today of the New York Times, because she is being thrust into completely uncharted territory where she will have to choose between two irreconcilable paths. She either will have to cannibalize the flagship print product to build the strongest possible digital franchise for the Times – OR – she will have to concentrate on sustaining the commercial strength of the print edition at the risk of channeling insufficient resources into assuring the strongest possible digital future for America’s newspaper of record.
Although it would be nice to have it both ways, that is not going to be possible in a time that resources are unlikely to increase – and, in the worst case, could shrink – at the most well-endowed newsroom in the land, where the editorial payroll tops 1,000 individuals.
The problem for Abramson is that the print and digital media demand significantly differentiated products, which the Times has not been able to produce to date with even its enviable strength. While the Times is formidably staffed to produce its estimable print edition, its digital business has not gotten the same resources and attention as the print product.
...With most demographic and commercial trends suggesting that print readership and advertising revenues will continue to decline as the Boomer generation rides into the sunset, newspapers today rely on the print product not only to keep the lights on but also to fund the innovation they hope will successfully transition their franchises to an increasingly digi-centric world.
But the stakes in this balancing act are higher for the NYT than most publishers because the growing success of its digital product – it is the top pure-play news site in ComScore rankings – could cut deeply into the sale of the print version of the national edition that is responsible for some 60% of the newspaper’s circulation. The most recent audits show that total average circ for the Times is 916,911 on weekdays and 1.3 million on Sunday, meaning that 550,000 daily subscribers and 780,000 Sunday readers live out here in the hinterlands where it costs nearly $1,000 a year to buy the national print edition of the Times.

The Rise Of Agent-Publishers Is Bad For The Book Business

paidcontent reporting:
As this emergent Agent-Publisher construct grows into a mainstream strategy, it brings to the surface a set of concerns that deserves interrogation. Can an Agent effectively represent an Author’s best interests in such a dynamic? If you remove the central plank of an Agency and replace it with the central plank of a Publisher, is it still the same ship?
A Crisis of Professional Ethics
The duty of agents, and their special virtue in exigent times, is to think beyond the present, lead their clients wisely into new opportunities, and build the most well-equipped team to get them there. I want to believe this is the calling that leads agents to develop digital publishing arms for their clients: a call, as I suggested at Digital Book World earlier this year, to radical mediation.
Yet even if Agent-Publishers hold such noble intentions, there is one party with whom they cannot mediate on their clients’ behalf: themselves. An agent representing a client’s works to licensees cannot realistically maintain his or her unwavering allegiance to that client when the licensee is the Agency itself—however the “digital publishing arm” of the agency is described. This conflict is unavoidable, and has repercussions across the relationship, from an Agent’s signing of a client, to the preparation and pitch to publishers, to the decision to publish independently, to the terms established for profit and expenses, to the rights grant and term and beyond. Every instance of the relationship is brought into question if the agent’s primary position as author advocate is compromised. This concern is not adequately addressed by claiming good intentions. Nor by gesturing toward a trusting agent-author relationship. Nor by claiming we are in a time of experimentation. Certain principles do not evaporate in the face of innovation.

Jill Abramson's Email to 'New York Times' Staff New executive editor to focus on digital innovation

adweek reporting:
In a Tuesday email from Jill Abramson to her staff, the new executive editor of The New York Times laid out what she and the other editorial leaders at the paper will be focusing on in her first year—or, as she puts it, “Year One.”
"I plan to focus my energies on two areas: digital innovation and integration and, no surprise here, the news," Abramson wrote. "I also plan to be out in the newsroom, a lot, talking to all of you and listening to your ideas of how we push our journalism forward. You’ll be sick of me there will be so many brainstorming sessions, meal invitations, and small meetings."
Abramson also describes the responsibilities of her leadership team —managing news editor Dean Baquet, features and weekly section editor Rick Berke, foreign editor Susan Chira, managing editor for operations John Geddes, and assistant managing editor Jim Roberts. The full email:

New Phone Hacking Testimony Contradicts James Murdoch's Former executives say Murdoch knew of damaging email By

adweek reporting:
In testimony of their own on Tuesday, two former News of the World executives contradicted James Murdoch's assertions before Parliament that he had no knowledge of phone hacking beyond just "one rogue reporter."
Tom Crone, who had been legal manager for News of the World until he resigned July 15, and Colin Myler, a former editor of the tabloid, were testifying before the House of Commons' Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee regarding information they relayed to Murdoch. Both Crone and Myler said they were "certain" they told Murdoch about the “For Neville” email—a 2005 document sent between News of the World journalists Ross Hindley and Neville Thurlbeck that included transcripts from hacked voicemail messages belonging to Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers Association. The email indicates that phone hacking was more pervasive at the paper than just the act of one reporter.
Crone said the email was “the sole reason” a lawsuit brought by Taylor over the hacking had to be settled. News International paid Taylor $1.1 million in damages, as well as legal fees. The settlement arrangement included a confidentiality agreement prohibiting Taylor from speaking about his phone hacking case.
When Rupert and James Murdoch testified before the committee in July, both said they were not told of the email.
In additional documentation released by the committee on Tuesday, Les Hinton—former chief executive of News International—rejected an offer to expand upon his 2007 and 2009 parliamentary testimony about hacking. In a letter to the committee, Hinton said, “I answered all questions truthfully and to the best of my knowledge and recollection.” And in a separate letter, lawyers representing former News of the World editor Andy Coulson, who went on to serve as a top aide to Prime Minister David Cameron, also turned down a similar offer from the committee to allow Coulson to make additional comments regarding his previous testimony.

One in Ten Mobile Users Redeem Coupons

emarketer reporting:
Mobile coupons represent a small portion of digital promotions, but usage is growing at a fast pace. The popularity of mobile coupons extends the trend of searching for online coupons, which emerged as a widespread, money-saving activity during the recession.
“Even as the sputtering economy attempts its recovery, the popularity of couponing has continued, spurred in part by the burgeoning daily deals space,” said Noah Elkin, eMarketer principal analyst and author of the new report, “Mobile Coupons: Offers and Deals Light Up the Last Mile.” “Mobile coupons will play a central role in broadening the appeal and acceptance of digital coupons among shoppers.”
eMarketer estimates that nearly 20 million US adults will redeem a mobile coupon this year, including coupons or codes received via SMS, applications and mobile web browsers; quick response codes for redemption online or offline; and group buying coupons purchased via mobile. By 2013, the number using such coupons will nearly double, and 16.5% of all US adult mobile phone users will redeem a coupon that year.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

9 mobile marketing facts

Hubspoblog reporting:
Here are 9 amazing facts and figures about mobile marketing that’ll help you wrap your head around why mobile is going to be bigger than radio, TV, and the personal computer – combined.
9 Amazing Mobile Marketing Statistics

1. The growth of the iPhone was 10 times faster than the growth of America Online. (This is an amazing statistic for those of us who remember mailboxes stuffed with AOL discs during the 1990s.) (Tweet This Stat!)
2. It takes 26 hours for the average person to report a lost wallet. It takes 68 minutes for them to report a lost phone. (Tweet This Stat!)
3. There are 6.8 billion people on the planet. 5.1 billion of them own a cell phone, but only 4.2 billion own a toothbrush. (Tweet This Stat!)
4. In some countries, there are more mobile subscriptions than there are people. (How can this be? It’s because some people own more than one mobile phone.) (Tweet This Stat!)
5. It takes 90 minutes for the average person to respond to an email. It takes 90 seconds for the average person to respond to a text message. (Tweet This Stat!)
6. 70% of all mobile searches result in action within 1 hour. (Tweet This Stat!)
7. Mobile coupons get 10 times the redemption rate of traditional coupons. (Tweet This Stat!)
8. There are more mobile phones on the planet than there are TVs. (Tweet This Stat!)
9. 91% of all U.S. citizens have their mobile device within reach 24/7. (Tweet This Stat!)

Amazon's Kindle Tablet could slaughter the Android tablet market

zdnet reporting:
We’ve been talking about the Amazon Kindle Tablet for what feels like forever, but now that someone has had a hands-on with this device, the reality of just how toxic this could be to other Android tablets is sinking in.
First to post his thoughts on the tablet is TechCrunch’s MG Siegler.
Here’s the deal:
  • 7-inch full-color screen, no eInk (10-inch coming in 2012)
  • Two-finger multitouch support
  • Runs a version of Android that’s older than 2.2 but it’s been heavily customized
  • No camera
  • UI looks and feels like Amazon’s iOS Kindle app
  • 6GB of storage
  • The killer - $250
A few things stand out here. First is the price. $250 is a little bit higher than some people were expecting ($199 was touted as the sweet spot). $250 will wipe the floor with tablets from other makers. Seriously. Amazon has huge market reach and this will have a huge effect on other tablets … even possibly the iPad.
Another interesting point is that Amazon has decided to go it alone with a pre-2.2 version of Android, which means that Google will have to come to terms with a major fork in the Android code. The fact that Amazon didn’t go with ‘Honeycomb‘ or ‘Ice Cream Sandwich‘ (and that the Kindle Tablet will never get either of these) will be a major blow to both Google and OEMs who have been putting a lot of effort (and faith) in these releases.