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Discovery To Boost Its Short Form Production In Deal With Snapchat

Snapchat

Discovery Communications will increase its involvement with so-called “mobile first” shortform programming in a deal announced today to develop shows for Snapchat’s Discover platform. The lineup will include shows they say will be “inspired by” Discovery properties including Shark Week and Mythbusters. They also plan to collaborate to offer Discovery advertisers opportunities to reach audiences using what they call “Snap's innovative advertising technology and formats and… Read

Business

Facebook To Play Audio Automatically When Users See News Feed Videos

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Ben Margot/AP/REX/Shutterstock (6205028a)
Facebook A sign at Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. The heartache of a broken relationship may soon become less painful on Facebook. The world's largest social network is trying to help people who have split up with a spouse or lover, offering a new feature that spares them from constantly seeing their former partner's posts and pictures in their news feed
Facebook Breakups, Menlo Park, USA

Facebook videos — and ads — are about to become noisier as a result of some app updates the social media company announced today. Audio soon will play automatically in News Feed videos, a change from the current arrangement that keeps them silent until the user clicks on the video. “As people watch more video on phones, they've come to expect sound when the volume on their device is turned on,” Product Manager Dana Sittler and Engineering Manager Alex Li say in a blog post… Read

Business

Epix Subscribers Can Now Watch It On Apple TV

Epix Logo 2

Pay TV subscribers who subscribe to Epix will be able to watch the premium service on a fourth-generation Apple TV box, the companies said this morning. The app will enable subscribers to watch Epix’s multiplexed linear channels live, and add content to a personal queue. New customers can sign for a four-week free trial. After that, they pay whatever their pay TV provider charges. Epix CEO Mark Greenberg calls Apple “a renowned leader in shaping the digital… Read

Business

ClearPlay Confirms It Can No Longer Stream New Filtered Movies Through Google, As Competing VidAngel Fights Injunction

jack-reacher-never-go-back

In a twist to the movie-filtering wars, ClearPlay, which offers streams of Hollywood films with potentially objectionable content blocked, confirmed that it has been prevented from providing new filtered titles through Google, even as competing VidAngel fights an injunction against its own service. In a statement Tuesday, ClearPlay co-founder and chief executive Matthew Jarman said: “ClearPlay filtering continues to work with stream content available through Google Play… Read

Business

Fox CEO Says Hulu Is “Very Focused” On Avoiding Live Streaming Snafus

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Simon Wilkinson/REX/Shutterstock (4204741c)
James Murdoch gives his keynote speech at Palais des Festivals, Cannes.
Palais des Festivals, Cannes - 13 Oct 2014

Hulu’s technology types are “very, very focused” on making sure that its upcoming live streaming service won’t suffer from some of the technical snafus that have irked some DirecTV Now subscribers, Fox CEO James Murdoch told analysts today. “We’ve seen really good progress in terms of our ability to stream concurrent streams of live sports,” he said in Fox’s quarterly call with analysts to discuss earnings for the last three months of 2016. He acknowledges that “you never… Read

TV

Fox Sports’ Super Bowl Live Stream Goes Down Late In Game

fox-sports-go

Those watching Super Bowl 51 this evening via Fox Sports’ live stream on Fox Sports Go hit a snag in a critical moment in the fourth quarter, in the middle of New England’s rally that eventually forced overtime in the Super Bowl. The live stream on the Fox site went down briefly late in the game, sending Twitter into a tizzy. Fox’s tech staff recognized the problem and said it was resolved, but some users still said they were unable to stream the game. It’s unclear the… Read

Business

FCC Unveils Policy Changes Favoring Telcos, TV Stations And ISPs

UNITED STATES - MAY 12: FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai prepares to testify before a Senate Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee hearing in Dirksen Building on the Federal Communications Commission's proposed budget for FY2016, May 12, 2015. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call) (CQ Roll Call via AP Images)

Wireless phone companies and TV stations are among the big winners in a bevy of decisions that the FCC — under its new chairman, Ajit Pai —  released today as it begins to reverse policies supported by his predecessor, Tom Wheeler. Pai halted the agency’s investigation into so-called zero rating programs that enable wireless companies to waive subscribers’ data charges when they access company-owned services. The FCC had challenged the practice as a violation of the… Read

Awardsline

Sci-Tech Oscars: John Cho & Leslie Mann To Emcee

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John Cho and Leslie Mann will host the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Scientific and Technical Awards ceremony on February 11 at the Beverly Wilshire. The awards were unveiled last month. A total of 18 awards will be presented with technical achievement or scientific and engineering awards. Among the recipients this year are camera innovations from Sony, Panasonic, Arri and Red Digital Cinema. As per usual, portions of the Sci-Tech presentation will be… Read

breakingBusiness

Snapchat Owner Seeks $3B In IPO

Snapchat

Silicon Valley and Wall Street have been salivating for Snap Inc., which owns SnapChat, to go public — and the company says today that it plans to do so with a preliminary proxy proposing to raise $3 billion. The plan would create three classes of stock, enabling CEO Evan Spiegel and CTO Robert Murphy, both co-founders, to retain control. The IPO would sell non-voting Class A shares to the public. Sony Entertainment’s Michael Lynton is chairman of the board and plans to le… Read

Business

‘Serial’ Creators Launch Podcast Production Company & New Digital Series

December 20, 2016 - Bibb County, AL: Producer Brian Reed in the field.

The team behind the Serial juggernaut has launched a podcast production company and set up its first digital series. Serial Productions' initial project will be S-Town, a nonfiction limited series set in rural Alabama and hosted by longtime This American Life producer Brian Reed. All episodes be released simultaneously in March. Production on S-Town began when a man reached out to This American Life complaining about his small Alabama town. He wanted a reporter to… Read

Business

Comcast And Roku Release Beta Version Of Xfinity TV App

xfinity-roku-beta-featured

The FCC may not want to help pay TV customers find an alternative to the set top boxes they lease. But Comcast today is offering one option to its subscribers who have a Roku device. They can download a beta version of an Xfinity TV app. It will enable them to access all of the live and on-demand programming  that they’d see from Comcast’s set top box — including local TV stations and cloud DVR recordings — along with company’s programming guide and user interface. But… Read

Business

Fox Promotes Salil Mehta To Head Up Newly-Created Gaming & VR Division

NBCUNIVERSAL EXECUTIVES -- Pictured: Salil Mehta, President, Business Operations, Strategy and Development, NBCUniversal -- NBCUniversal Photo by: Virginia Sherwood

20th Century Fox is streamlining the overseeing of its video gaming, location-based entertainment, virtual and augmented reality productions through the newly-created FoxNext, and has named Salil Mehta as President of the new division, effective immediately. Mehta joined Fox in 2013 and most recently served as President, Content Management for Twentieth Century Fox Film. In his new role, he’ll report jointly to Peter Rice, Chairman and CEO of Fox Networks Group, and… Read