Monthly Archives: April 2013

Look What Happens When You Give a Teenager a Tablet

MARCH 19, 2013

Apple? Android? Amazon?

Whatever. You folks bought a lot of tablets of last year. A new survey from Deloitte reports that 36 percent of Americans (or, at least, 36 percent of Americans who take online surveys) say they own a tablet. That’s up from 13 percent a year ago.

And once you have a tablet, you use it. Especially to watch movies. Though it turns out that if you have a tablet you’re more likely to watch movies everywhere, on every device, than a non-tablet owner.

Deloitte tablet

And kids these days! Deloitte says that a fifth of “trailing millennials” — 14-to-23-year-olds — say they’re watching TV shows on their tablets. That’s up from just 2 percent a year ago. But tablets still aren’t ubiqitous among that set — they’re more likely to watch their shows via smartphones, game consoles, computers or plain old TV sets.

deloitte trailing milennials tv

How the Middle East became a jazzy place

Goos Hofstee

Cairo-based Goos Hofstee takes an in-depth look at the history of Oriental Jazz – and a phenomenon known as “jazz diplomacy”.

Louis Armstrong by the Giza pyramids

During the heydays of the Cold War, when The United States’ image in the world was badly damaged, Adam Clayton Powell, the US representative for Harlem, went to the State Department with a rather revolutionary idea. In order to change the perception of the US abroad, the world needed to get to know the “real America”, not the America of racial segregation, the cultural wasteland, or the military giant, but the land of cultural freedom and modernity, the swinging America. Powell suggested that if they sent jazz musicians to the regions that were at risk of falling under Sovjet influence, these “Jazz Ambassadors” could create goodwill and change the people’s perception of America through their music.

One of the regions that were supposedly at risk of becoming a breeding ground for communism was the Middle East, and so the area quickly became one of the focus points of the so called “Jazz Diplomacy”. In 1956 bebop trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie was sent to Beirut, and subsequently to Dacca, East Pakistan, prompting one Pakistani editorial to argue that “The language of diplomacy ought to be translated into a score for a bop trumpet”. (more…)

More Teens Have Access to Tablets and Smartphones, New Study Shows

Digital Book World

March 13, 2013

Nearly 40% of U.S. teens own a smartphone and nearly a quarter own a tablet computer, according to a new study from the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Both numbers are up considerably from a year ago.

What’s more, a quarter of teens are “cell only” internet users, which means they connect to the internet with only their smartphone.

Publishers looking for an indication of where device usage is going may want to pay attention. The smartphone has become the most commonly owned mobile e-reading device in the U.S. This new Pew study shows that some significant portion of the next generation will use its smartphones as its only internet-connected device.

37% of all teens ages 12-17 have smartphones, up from just 23% in 2011

One in four teens are “cell-mostly” internet users – they mostly go online using their phone (more…)

Quarter of U.S. Buys Ebooks, Number Expected to Nearly Double by 2014, Survey Says

Digital Book World

March 14, 2013
Just over a quarter of Americans currently buy ebooks and nearly half plan to do so in a year’s time, according to a new survey from free ebook service Bookboon.

According to the survey, conducted in person and over the internet among nearly 6,000 U.S. adults, 27.1% currently buy ebooks and 22.7% expect to within a year, meaning that by 2014 about half of Americans will be buying ebooks.

This survey should be taken with a grain of salt. Bookboon put out a survey in Sept. that claimed that more than half of U.S. students preferred e-textbooks — however, adoption is incredibly low (about 6%) and other surveys and anecdotal evidence have been in lockstep asserting that students don’t yet prefer digital textbooks.

Bookboon also said in the beginning of 2012 that it intended to take 10% of the U.S. ebook market share by the end of the year and that hasn’t happened yet.

However, this particular survey seems to be in line with other surveys on similar topics:

– On the number of U.S. adults reading ebooks: about a quarter
– On the number of U.S. adults who own e-readers: about one-in-six
– On the number of U.S. adults who own tablets: between a quarter and a third

So, having passed this loose validation scheme, here are some other interesting stats from the report:

– 17.8% of Americans plan on buying an e-reader or a tablet computer or both by 2014
– 57.7% of Americans think that 50% or more of their book reading will be ebooks in three years; among current tablet owners, that number is 71.9% (read: tablet owners see the device as a place to read ebooks)
– 22.2% of Americans don’t plan to start reading ebooks any time in the next three years

The future of digital marketing in the #MENA region

Interactive & Social Media news in the Middle East

March 7, 2013

video marketing

Hello there! If you are new here, you might want to subscribe to the RSS feed for updates on this topic.

video marketing

This article was written by Miguel Rojas who works for Beyond 190 Studio, a media production company based in Dubai that has clients all over the Middle East.  Beyond 190 has specialized in offering video production services that include corporate films, documentaries and tv commercials among others. (more…)

NEWSLETTER SIGNUP Demographics Vary Across Social Networks

MAR 11, 2013

Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram are popular with differing demographics

eMarketer estimates that by the end of 2013 there will be 163.5 million social network users in the US, and unsurprisingly they are a diverse group.

A December 2012 study of social networking demographics from the Pew Internet & American Life Project found that Hispanic internet users were most likely to identify themselves as social network users, at 72% penetration, vs. 68% of black and 65% of white internet users. Pew also found that higher concentrations of women than men were social networkers by a margin of nearly 10 percentage points: 71% vs. 62%.

Social networks such as Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest seem to be attracting a particularly diverse coalition of users. Black internet users, for instance, were significantly more likely than average to use Twitter—while 16% of internet users overall said they used the service, 26% of black internet users said they did so. Hispanic internet users were also slightly overrepresented: 19% reported using the service.

Pew found this phenomenon even more pronounced on photo-sharing service Instagram, now owned by Facebook. Black internet users were nearly twice as likely to use it as the average internet user: 23% vs. 13% overall. Hispanic internet users overindexed as well, while whites were slightly less likely than the average internet user to be found on the site. Pew also found Instagram’s users skewed slightly female: 16% of women said they were on it, compared to 10% of men. (more…)

Fortune: YouTube music streaming service launching this year

By Brian Heater
posted Mar 5th, 2013

We’ve been hearing rumblings about Google’s plans for a Spotify-killer for what seems like forever now. More recently, there’s been word that the company’s YouTube brand is also getting set set to enter the space, albeit with some overlap from a Google-branded effort. Fortune spoke to some anonymous-type folks in the record industry who confirmed the latter, adding that the service is set to launch this year. The offering will apparently give users some free streaming, with additional features being made available for a subscription fee. The site reached out to YouTube, who offered the following bit of hopeful non-commitment:

While we don’t comment on rumor or speculation, there are some content creators that think they would benefit from a subscription revenue stream in addition to ads, so we’re looking at that.

So, you know, stay tuned.

YouTube’s Show-Me-the-Money Problem

MARCH 4, 2013

The big picture for YouTube looks good. The world’s biggest video site keeps getting bigger, generating more video views and more ad dollars.

jay-z youtube

Things are fuzzier for some of YouTube’s biggest programming partners. Their views are
In the near term, that’s pushing many big YouTube networks and partners to look hard for new sources of revenue. The bigger question is whether YouTube will be able to generate enough ad money for content makers to support the “premium” programming it has been trying to attract so it can compete with traditional TV. also increasing. But the ad revenue YouTube generates for their stuff isn’t keeping pace.

“It’s hard, given YouTube’s low [revenue-sharing] numbers and lack of marketing infrastructure to make the unit economics for premium programming work,” says Steve Raymond, who runs Big Frame, a YouTube network/programmer that says it has generated 3.2 billion views.

The dollars programmers earn from YouTube’s ad-selling efforts range widely. But many big publishers say that after YouTube takes its 45 percent cut of the ads it sells, they frequently end up keeping about $2.50 for every 1,000 views their clips generate — that is, if their video generates a million views, they get $2,500. Other publishers say their split can be as high as $10 per 1,000.

Those rates were supposed to improve in the last year, in part because of YouTube’s splashy effort to create advertising-friendly “channels” by advancing programmers like Big Frame millions of dollars to make exclusive shows for the site. Last May, it hosted a glitzy “Brandcast” event in New York, where it brought out stars like Jay-Z to sell marketers on the idea that YouTube should command TV-like dollars.

Instead, according to people in and outside of YouTube, last year the site ended up with a glut of inventory, which put even more pressure on ad rates.

Last fall, YouTube invited top programmers for a sneak peek at YouTube Space, a glitzy new production studio it built in Los Angeles; at the event, many of them took the occasion to gripe about the site. “Every single person in the entertainment group complained to [YouTube content executive] Alex Carloss: ‘We’re not making enough money,’” said an attendee. (more…)

NBA-Even with its popularity, NBA has room for growth in China

Yahoo! News

By Steve Ginsburg
Reuters – Fri, Feb 22, 2013

Feb 22 (Reuters) – SBIZThe National Basketball Association (NBA) is opening a glitzy “lifestyle destination” complex with an official basketball court, a hoop-themed restaurant and a children’s zone.

You can train like Kobe Bryant, or even a Laker girl, at a state-of-the-art fitness center.

Perhaps you could spend the day at an interactive carnival, either shooting jump shots against a virtual LeBron James or participate in a two-on-two competition with friends or fellow visitors.

The NBA experience in the $1.5 billion, 2,300-acre sports and entertainment superstructure is not in Beverly Hills or the shadow of Madison Square Garden in Manhattan.

It is on the outskirts of Beijing.

“China is our number one market outside of the United States,” Heidi Ueberroth, president of NBA International, told Reuters. “The growth has been very significant and very much on track, and we are very much still just scratching the surface.”

Many people in the United States believe basketball entered China’s public consciousness when Yao Ming joined the NBA. Though he had a enormous impact, the game had a huge following well before the 7-foot-6 (2.29 metre) center became a member of the Houston Rockets in 2002. (more…)

Africa’s Music Industry: Building With Cassettes & MP3s In An Underdeveloped Terrain


The African music industry is fascinating less for the sectors that appear similar to U.S. or European sectors of the industry and more for what is unique about emerging African nations. The widespread adoption of basic cellphones for communication and media consumption just doesn’t look the same as one experiences in the States. And though South Africa may host an industry more similar in organization, countries such as Nigeria offer a context in which most Western artists would stumble and fall.

I’ve been keeping up superficially with Africa’s emerging music industry for the past decade. That’s not really a long time for an industry that’s perpetually emerging but it has clued me in to the fact that most of what’s happening there you can’t see here except for fragments that surface in the media from time to time. Here’s a collection of some of the meatier bits and pieces that have surfaced of late. (more…)