Archive for April, 2012

NBA ratings rise in shortened season

April 29, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Top News: ABC, TNT gamecasts both up from the previous season

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Homevid biz grows 2.5% in first quarter

April 29, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Film News: Blu-ray, VOD, digital distribution accounts for robust sales

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Mission Impossibly Funny: Siri Will Self-Destruct in Five Seconds (Video)

April 29, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Here is a very clever video, which imagines a new feature on iPhone 5 — the Siri voice command cracks the device if you key in the wrong password three times in a row, after doing a quick data transfer to your iTunes account. Somehow, I don’t think this going to be in the next version of the Apple smartphone, but it’s certainly innovative in a twisted way. Enjoy:

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A Look Back at a Week’s Worth of Programming News

April 28, 2012  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

I don't know if you've heard, but various television networks are having these up-front presentations, and they range from

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Exclusive: The $1.2 Billion Inside Story of How Demand Media Almost Went Private Last Week (and Then Didn’t)

April 28, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

According to sources close to the situation, Demand Media was deep into discussions with a private equity firm to complete a deal that would have taken the online content company private for almost double its current value. But Demand abandoned the effort this past week — which was born from an aggressive attempt by Boston-based Thomas H. Lee Partners to purchase the company for a price of up to $1.2 billion. That was due to a number of challenges, including complications related to its financing and the ability to retain executives in its aftermath. The move on Demand by private investors is perhaps no surprise and is part of a wider trend related to some Internet companies whose stocks have a depressed value relative to the worth of their assets. Among companies having been and also being evaluated by private equity firms, whose business it is to turned the undervalued into a goldmine: Yahoo and AOL. And also Demand, which is now worth only $605 million, a market cap that is off 65 percent since it went public in February 2011. Shares now trade at $7.25 each. That depressed share price has been due to a number of issues, most especially changes to Google’s search algorithm to improve results. Called Panda, the changes at the search giant — a critical partner of Demand’s — has cut traffic to its major content sites and also called into question its ability to monetize its scaled editorial efforts. Such a situation is nearly irresistible to PE firms — in this case Lee, which approached the Demand with an initial offer to take the company private at $11.28 a share. The price fluctuated over the course of the negotiations, as due diligence went on, and included a large sum of money for possible acquisitions related to a content roll-up strategy. One source underscored that the board of the Santa Monica, Calif. company had no interest or intention to sell the business, but that the premium was large enough that it engaged. Several sources said that the board threw out an even heftier number that would shut down any interest, but that Lee came pretty close to that price, so talks heated up quickly. The deal from Lee, which included a strategy of splitting up the content arm from Demand’s lucrative domain registar business, included a moderate amount of debt. There were also large cash-outs provisions for major shareholders, as well as CEO and co-founder Richard Rosenblatt. Thus, the two sides engaged intensely in the last several weeks in crafting an agreement, although the devil would prove to be in the details. One big issue is that taking Demand private was still a big financial commitment for Lee — which tried to engage some of its limited partners in the transaction — as well as other investors, including Silicon Valley’s Marc Andreessen. That proved harder than Lee thought, said sources, with some balking at the firm’s ability to make a big enough score on the possible turnaround.

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Despite Crackdowns, Sina Still Winning the Weibo Game

April 28, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Chinese microblogging site Sina Weibo may be in the midst of its most aggressive crackdown yet following an explosion of political rumors among users, but it is still beating Tencent in the microblogging race in China, according to a McKinsey & Co. report released this week. According to the report, social networking is becoming a more important means of communication and information gathering in China, where 36% of PC users said social media sites are their favorite source of content. Chinese users spend an average of 46 minutes per day on social media sites, the report says, while users in the U.S. and Japan spend 37 minutes and seven minutes on the sites per day, respectively. Read the rest of this post on the original site

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Amazon Softens Stance on Taxes

April 28, 2012  |  All Things Digital  |  No Comments

Amazon.com Inc. reached an agreement with Texas officials Friday to begin collecting sales taxes in the state starting in July and appears to be backing away from its long-held opposition to tax collection in states where it has warehouses and other facilities. With the deal, the Seattle-based company is on track to collect sales taxes in 12 states, which make up about 40% of the U.S. population, by 2016. Amazon currently collects taxes in five states. Since 2011, it has reached agreements with seven other states, including Texas, to begin tax collection over the next four years. Read the rest of this post on the original site

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Ferreira’s ‘Nens’ tops Malaga

April 28, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

International News: 'Carmina' and 'Miel' also scoop kudos

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‘Think’ tops newcomers at Friday B.O.

April 28, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Top News: 'Engagement' opens lower than expected; 'Avengers' hot overseas

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‘Think’ tops newcomers at Friday B.O.

April 28, 2012  |  Variety  |  No Comments

Top News: 'Engagement' opens lower than expected; 'Avengers' hot overseas

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