Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Coca-Cola Seeks Shop to Mine Social Web

Read the article here

Coca Cola has announced a hunt for an agency to help with social media monitoring. Ad Age reports that currently 20 companies are in contention and vying for the chance to monitor billion dollar brands such as: Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite, Minute Maid, Powerade, Vitamin Water and Dasani. "Our goal is to identify a consistent agency and format for conducting social-media monitoring," Kerry Tressler, a Coca-Cola spokeswoman said. "We want to yield the most information about what consumers are saying about our brands, so we know what they are looking for."

Some executives in the ad world are likening Coca-Cola's strategy to that of Gatorade's "Mission Control" initiative last year. Gatorade dedicated an actual space, complete with monitoring screens and analytic tools to follow social media discussions of their products in real time. Such efforts led to Gatorade's new advertisements.

This story is of particular interest for the future of advertising within large corporations. With the advents of Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, and other social media resources companies are changing the way they analyze their consumer. Immediate feedback, criticism and praise of their products and media usage is now a standard. The future of social media monitoring may lead to a more discursive and engaging atmosphere between producer and customer but also lends itself to the possibility of over invasion into consumer life by a corporation.

DreamWorks Animation partners with China's leading online video site

This article discusses Kung Fu Panda and other DreamWorks productions being put on the popular chinese video site Other companies such as Warner Bros. have already agreed to put up many of their films as well. All of these films are being sold for under a dollar to combat piracy in China. China is merging with Hollywood still further by adopting 3-D technology as well as co-financing new films.

This article was interesting to me because it shows how Hollywood and the film industry is going global. With this merge with China it may not be long before foreign films become more widespread throughout the United States. What was really interesting to me was the method has chosen to combat piracy. They are selling these films for prices like 46 or 77 cents to stop people from buying the bootlegged versions. In this way they are making the industry once again receive profit but it may also have other consequences. DVD sales are one of the major ways a film can make money. With more and more films becoming available online for a cheaper cost, the loss will be felt in the DVD sales and force the film industry to look for alternative means for profits. The internet is changing the film industry and now the film industry is using this new tool to expand and change the way the market works.

What Netflix Could Teach Hollywood

The article I read explains that Hollywood chooses movies to promote that they feel will be aimed at the majority. A common misconception is that of the 6o,000 titles available on Netflix only 1,000 are rented a day. This is far from the truth, Netflix calculated that 35,000 to 40,000 movies are rented from the selection each day. The article goes on to explain that while Hollywood only promotes certain movies, audiences are looking for a wider selection to view. With Netflix's ability to house over 60,000 titles it proved to be far more effective then video stores who were limited to how many movies could be shelved.
While Netflix is still evolving and making improvements to help please their critics, it has proven to be an important step forward in the media industry. No longer will movies be forgotten or eliminated because of Netflix!

Yahoo Television

I found an article from the Business Insider that discusses the release of Yahoo’s new TV lineup an argues it could save the companies entire TV division and keep the idea of web television alive. Megan Angelo points out five different reasons why this could potentially be a big hit for Yahoo. First, the company is not working with small no-name actors; they have some well known celebrities headlining some of their shows. They have a former studio head, Ben Silverman, running their new network and they are producing mostly reality shows, which are a lot easier to sell and so not require a lot of buildup. Yahoo is in a good position because they already receive millions of viewers a day to their website. Therefore, advertising will not be an issue and getting the content in front of the general population will be easy.

I found this to be particularly interesting because the internet seems to be taking over various industries, and now television shows are going to be hit even harder than they already were with Megavideo and Hulu. Once the internet begins producing its own shows, it will be even harder to studios to produce shows people will sit down and watch at a certain time when they have other options online. This is just another example of how the internet is changing the game and causing a stir in industries that have previously had no unique forms of competition.

Who Was Behind @Irene? An Agency, Of Course.

This article, which acts as an example of the many ways in which Twitter is utilized today in social media, was written by a woman whose Twitter account was used as an interesting project in the development of Hurricane Irene. Irene (@Irene), a young woman who seems to one of a fair few with a Twitter name composed of simply her first name, began to receive many tweets regarding the hurricane itself. Her sarcastic tweet "Btw, tweeting messages to @irene doesn't deliver any messages to the hurricane. Sorry," quickly gained her new followers and attracted the attention of a couple of her co-workers. These co-workers then proceeded to borrow her Twitter account in order to demonstrate its use as a central base for information about Hurricane Irene, as well as to provide the public with general entertainment while many awaited Irene's arrival. 

I found this piece to be particularly interesting for a couple of reasons: firstly, the first place that I found this article was on Free Press which is a non-profit organization whose primary goal is to "Save the News," which in my eyes proves that this piece is a prime example of the ways in which news is changing and the many new ways in which we may be able to encounter various stories; secondly, it also acts as a great example in the different ways that Twitter is being used. Businesses promote their services and images through the use of Twitter, students may use it as a means of creating a cyber-persona, and others may misuse the use of hashtags or tweets at individuals, which can (as we have seen in this article) cause a great deal of confusion or even indirectly create a new trend. Lastly, the article itself proved to be interesting in its writing style as Irene writes this article from the perspective of herself and her co-workers, drawing conclusions as to the ways in which this project was indeed successful.

Advertisers Will Pour In for Fox UFC Package

This article caught my attention for various reasons. First off, it was only 5 years ago that the UFC was facing financial problems and could not find any true media conglomerate to back their business. Not only has the UFC expanded and grown in the past five years it is quickly becoming the new big thing in sports. Some people say boxing is beginning the fade while the UFC offers a new sense of fighting and a more one on one with the fighter.
Fox Network is taking a leap of faith with their interest in the UFC, but i think it will pay off. The UFC had the "do not buy tag" for so many years, however the amount of growth and revenue in the last five years could change any execs opinion.
With relation to "the business of media" this directly relates to how media and business are always related when it comes to money. Fox is hoping to cash in on and already popular attraction but now expand to more followers hoping to cash in big.

A Decade Later: The Paley Center for Media Remembers September 11

A Decade Later: The Paley Center for Media Remembers September 11

A decade later, the tragedy of September 11th has not only shaped our hearts but also our news media. The article posses the question, why we as a nation and other media sources should celebrate/honor a day when we were attacked. But then follows up with the notion that news media and television shows have significantly changed after the 9/11 attacks.

I found this article interesting because it marks a historical change in our daily media. As the article stated, prior to the attacks we did not here much about Taliban or Al-Qaeda but it has now become apart of our everyday media. With that being said I also find it interesting how much power the media has over us viewers, the media will determine what is relevant to the American culture. This idea of relevancy leads me to my next point. The media is a great tool to stay updated in local and global events however I believe it can be very biases with the information shared. In all our media structures will continue to evolve overtime coinciding with global and local events.

AMC Considering "Postgame" Shows for Scripted Programming

One of my favorite things about watching sports, particularly football, is the postgame shows. Even after watching the entire game, its always interesting to hear the studio analysts discuss the events of the game that just happened (even if they are completely wrong and infuriating to listen to). Similarly, I am always looking for reviews of TV shows and movies that I have just seen, with the expectation of reading about something I may have missed or did not think about when watching the show. Currently, TV shows have their own version of "postgame" shows only in the realm of reality TV: Jersey Shore, Real World etc. often have a reaction show after, explaining what had happened, giving interviews with the cast and providing fans with more information about shows that they had just watched.

This article is interesting because the idea of AMC, arguably the top producer of high-end shows (Mad Men, Breaking Bad etc.), is considering adding a type of post-show to their prominent series. Because these series are so complex and have long narratives based on the previous history of the program, these types of shows would be able to help bring in new fans to well acclaimed (yet not necessarily well viewed) shows while catering to hard core fans who are attempting to form their own conclusions about the show and its major themes. I like to compare watching these shows to reading a good novel when trying to explain their appeal people who haven't seen them: its television, but if you do not know what happened earlier, you aren't paying attention to every minute of every scene, or the show uses confusing or oblique metaphors to convey the story, there will be something that will be missed in the narrative. I'm sure this type of show has been attempted before (I didn't watch Lost, but I recall people talking about recap shows), but it is very interesting that AMC is considering these recap shows for all of their original programming.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

ESPN and Xbox

I found this article using a link posted to Blackboard. This article immediately interested me because it dealt with two things I enjoy sports and videogames. The article goes on to discuss how ESPN is creating an app for Xbox which will allow Xbox Live Gold subscribers to watch games live. Other features the application include; the ability to watch two games side by side, control both games as if they are on DVR, viewers also have the option of viewing highlights of other games on one side of the screen while still viewing a live game. This app would also work with Xbox Kinect which would allow the users to control the games completely without a remote using their bodies.

There is however a few negative aspects to viewing live sports in this fashion. The main problem being the picture quality of games being broadcast through Xbox Live will not be as high quality. The second problem is licensing agreements must be met with the leagues like NFL and meeting these can become very expensive.

I’m very curious to see how this will play out and if ESPN and Xbox will actually be able to work out the licensing agreements. If this all does get worked out it would be a great way to watch some games.

Social Media Giants'

Giants Bring Twitter To Games, Broadcasts

We've seen a lot of famous athletes light up Twitter recently, and now professional teams like the New York Giants are using the site to increase fan interaction before during and after games. Basically, the entire integration is an attempt to further connect the fans (who pay the organizational bills through their support) to the product on the field.

The Cleveland Indians case is similar, in that they are also using the social media site to connect the users more closely with the team that they follow.

Amazon Said to Strike Licensing Deal With Sony

With the cloud revolution upon us, everyone is trying to get in (even though windows has had cloud computing for at least a year). Amazon has created a cloud where users could access their music anywhere at anytime. For this to work though the need the record companies to sing off on the legal rights. They first label to sign with Amazon was Sony Music, whom at first publicly said they were not going to support it. Both sides ave very quite on what actually happened to make the deal go through. Amazon is in talks with other major labels currently.

This was a big win for Amazon, but the party looks short lived. They beat their competitors into the cloud market, but Google and Apple are both in beta testing for their cloud service. It is only a matter of time till Amazon loses a significant portion of the market. It is also unclear with Amazon cloud, if users can move all their songs onto the system, or just music purchased on the Amazon website. Sony was placed in a join or die situation. They could resist the cloud but that would only hurt them. Most music no a days is illegally downloaded. Users are going to find one way or another to get the songs they want. This decision at least gives Sony a chance to profit from this market. Again, Sony will not be making significant money from this of for long. Once Apple and Google release their clouds it will look like a two man race from then on.

Social Media State-by-State Guide for Hurricane Irene

I found this article on the New York Times Media Coder Blog. This entry is about a newly instated state-by-state social media guide to be used for news and conversation.  A new Pew study found that 50 percent of people in the US use social media. Although at times things like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube can be used for phony and false information, people also turn to these outlets to be updated about news, videos, photos, and emergency information. This new social media platform is arriving with the recent damages caused by Hurricane Irene. The state-by-state guide offers Twitter handles and Facebook pages for specific states, The American Red Cross, The US National WeatherService, and etc.

I thought this entry was interesting because it shows just how prominent and affective social media is in our culture. Information is spread throughout the world by the click of a few buttons. I know that when the east coast experienced the earth quake almost everyone I knew either tweeted or updated their facebook statuses about the quake. It has proven itselfto be an affective way to disseminate information extremely well. Social media is truly taking over.

Tyler, The Creator Wins Top Artist at VMA's

I found this article via fox news and it caught my attention for several reasons. First off, I've been a fan of Tyler, the Creator (an up and coming hip hop artist) for a while now, and was following him far before he made a real name for himself in the industry. Also, the article does make a good point...not many people have heard of him, and his song was not high scoring on the charts. The article was short and to the point, but the point was well made...

The article starts with explaining lady gaga's oddities, which are always amusing, and then asks the reader whether or not anyone has ever heard of this rapper. The real question, in my opinion (and coming from a fan of Tyler, the Creator), was his song "Yonkers" really worthy of a top pick at the VMA's. The answer is up for debate, but I really don't think its a yes. I like his music, but its a little strange and dark and I've recently heard several other artists who've made more of an impression on me than him.

Regardless, I thought the article was interesting, and brings up a good point.

Weather Channel's Ratings Surge with Irene

The article is about hurricane Irene's influence on the Weather Channel sky rocketing rating's across news networks such as Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC. As hurricane Irene crawled up the East Coast delivering mass rain showers and causing land to fall, residents in affected areas went to Weather Channel for information about the approaching storm. On Saturday, according to Nielsen the channel's ratings peaked capturing a record audience of 4 million viewers, surpasssing the previous record of 3.93 million set by hurricane Katrina. Throughout the weekend the Weather Channel's rating continued to spike across all the networks.

I thought this was interesting because most of news that is covered by networks is ususally carrying negative tones, such as death, distruction, and violence. Theses themes say alot about the mentality of the media and its audience who are both attracted and interested in these negative storys. Although, I do realize that this was a big story and affected the entire East Coast and people need to be informed to make the right decisions.

I also found this article interesting because technology is moving media towards mobile devices and the Internet, but this article showes that television still gathers a large audience. Television and the Weather Channel are both important mediums for news and seem to remain extremely valuable forms of media.

The State of the News Media

I came across this article on the Blackboard Online Resources page and it interested me because I wanted to see how print news compared to online news. As expected, newspapers appear to be a dying industry, according to the article. The reason is because more people are "going digital." They save money by doing so but at the same time, newspapers are dying and people are losing their jobs.

In the "key findings" section of the article, a chart shows that the number of online users increased by 17.1 percent from 2009 to 2010 while the number of newspaper and magazine users decreased by 5.0 and 8.9 percent, respectively.

In that same section, though, I was rather surprised to see the decrease of cable TV users (decreased by 13.7 percent).

Spanish-language media suffering less than mainstream outlets

I found this article on the Fox News Latino website, and it describes a trend in media that we may continue to see as the Latino population of the United States increases.

The article states that English-language "dailies," presumably newspapers, experienced a five percent decrease in circulation from 2009 to 2010. At the same time, Spanish-language "dailies" in the United States experienced a modest 1.9 percent increase. The article went on to display the other positive trends in Spanish-language based media in the U.S.

I think that there's a few interesting things going on here. First of all, as the Latino population of the United States increases, the need for more Spanish-language based media increases. Although it has been known for a long time that the Latino population is rapidly increasing in the United States, this article shows that there is an increasing demand for Spanish-language based media. It could lead to an even greater importance being placed on the Spanish language in the United States.

Also, this article brings out the point that for most, if not all, of the population, newspapers are suffering. The article does not point out the increase in Latino population, but it is easy to speculate that the circulation of Spanish-language newspapers in the U.S. is declining per person. As we have known, this is a trend that we expect to continue, with more Americans turning to the Internet as a form of written news. The main players in the newspaper industry (e.g. New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post) may continue to experience some success in print media, and an increasing success in online news. However, small town print publications are more than likely a thing of the past as the shift to online media continues.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Twitter: Response to Disaster

This article, taken from the New York Time's media blog, discusses the use of Twitter in a national response to riots and looting in several London neighborhoods near the beginning of August. Astoundingly, the twitter hashtag gained more than 70,00 followers, according to the article.

Through Twitter, a volunteer desiring to help those afflicted by the riots began a Twitter following which helped to enlist a large number of volunteers. The influence of media was also clear in this article when the author, Jennifer Preston, discussed how London police turned to Facebook and Flickr in order to identify possible looters in the case.

Often times, it seems like the realm which media affects is limited to either entertainment or informative news - these social networking tools are viewed as means of expressing thoughts feelings, and information, with no response other than a virtual one expected by the poster. This seems not to be the case anymore.

While this article may have more of a negative tone than others on this blog, I find it important to remember that the influence of social networking tools is far more important than just sharing information about entertainment or news. Social networking is now the tool that helps to initiate real responses to many types of events.

In this case, Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr are defining the response to a national tragedy, something that certainly wouldn't have happened even a few years ago. A post by a stranger united 70,000 people in the face of tragedy, and the means of inviting people to this group is accessible to anyone. The role of social networking tools, then, is clearly more than just to offer information, but it is to unite and affect a community's actions and decisions - a big role for a 140 character Twitter post.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Hi everyone! Welcome to our class blog, where you'll be required to post your responses to reading questions this semester.

Once you've accepted my invitation to join the blog, be sure to create a new post (to practice the posting thing). For that first post, use the Online Resources found on our course Blackboard page to find an article (or two!) that interest you. In your post, do a short summary of the issue covered by the articles, and explain why it interested you.

And be sure to print off a copy of the article(s) to bring with you to class on Wednesday! We'll be using them for an in-class activity.

Let me know if you have any questions!