Aereo has no Plan B if it loses its copyright battle with broadcasters in the Supreme Court, writes Jim Barthold. In that case, it will probably go out of business, according to an interview with the company's CEO, Chet Kanojia. "The deck seems stacked against Aereo," writes Barthold, noting that the Justice Department recently "threw its support behind broadcast networks... in claiming that Aereo gives consumers access to copyright content and doesn't pay licensing fees for that content."
It's a "back-to-the-future moment on Madison Avenue," with cast members from two TV Land series starring in the channel's first-ever live commercials (and the first of their kind probably since the 1960s), writes Stuart Elliott. On “Hot in Cleveland," all the main actresses (including TV veteran Betty White) will be pitching the Toyota Highlander, while Niecy Nash, star of “The Soul Man,” will advertise Bush’s Grillin’ Beans.
Is The Oregonian’s proposed plan to increase Web traffic a step in the wrong direction? Among other critics of the increased emphasis on clicks, Mathew Ingram writes in GigaOm: “A purely traffic-driven approach to digital media can lead to cheap click-bait, and potentially damage the trust that readers have in a publication.” That said, Ingram thinks the paper would be wise to give writers story quotas, encourage reader participation, and “focus on different types of posts -- news posts, engagement posts, aggregation posts, etc.”
Far from dismissing his lawsuit against Gawker, Quentin Tarantino and his lawyers now say the publisher “contrived the very ‘news story’ that it now seeks to hide behind.” As The Hollywood Reporter notes, “That would be a Jan. 23 post on Gawker's Defamer blog headlined, "Here Is the Leaked Quentin Tarantino Hateful Eight Script," which included a link to a third-party Web site hosting the 146-page script.”
The Wall Street Journal "generally avoid[s]...breaking news on Twitter," noted managing editor Gerard Baker in a speech in London. "We generally break to paying subscribers,” he added. However, that rule is broken on occasion, one observer noted, pointing out that WSJ did break the story of Philip Seymour Hoffman's death on the social network.
After embracing a “clickier” content strategy, TheWrap.com is now beating out key competitions like Deadline Hollywood and Variety. “Talk about going from fizzle to sizzle,” The New York Times reports. “For the months of December through February … TheWrap attracted an average of 2.8 million unique visitors from United States desktop computers,” NYT writes, citing comScore data. “In the period a year earlier, TheWrap had an average of 755,000 unique visitors.”
Perhaps as planned, Business Insider’s latest hire is getting a lot of attention. Yes, bringing on Anthony Weiner to pen a political column dubbed “Weiner!” has “wags everywhere digging into their past to find their best 2012-era genital puns,” Huffington Post reports. Henry Blodget, co-founder, CEO and editor-In chief of Business Insider, knows something about reinventions. Once a highflying stock analyst, Blodget was permanently banned from the securities industry after he was charged with civil securities fraud in 2003.
How badly does Spotify want in with the U.S. college crowd? So badly that the streaming music startup is halving the cost of its premium service for this valuable demographic. With the $5-a-month deal, “it hopes to entice a generation of music lovers that is more likely to stream music than buy CDs to pay for better features and mobile access,” the Associated Press reports. “Jeff Levick, Spotify's chief marketing and revenue officer, says a similar program in Britain has increased the number of paying Spotify customers over the last year.”
The once-mighty "American Idol" has fallen to "a new ratings low Thursday night, one that would have seemed incomprehensible even two years ago," with a 1.9 for viewers 18 and 49 and "the smallest overall audience — 8.4 million viewers — since a night in July in its first year," writes Bill Carter. Those numbers are "surely a psychological blow to the series, which once routinely hit a double-figure rating in that 18-49 category."
March Madness games generated record Web and mobile views in the first three days of the college basketball tournament, with NCAA March Madness Live service, managed by Turner Sports, tracking 21 million video streams from last Tuesday to Thursday. That's "up 42% versus last year, [with] more than 4 million hours of live video (up 18%), according to Turner, citing data from Omniture, Conviva and Bango," writes Todd Spangler.