Monthly Archives: July 2014

Pat Riley’s Other Master Plan: Trademarking ‘Three-Peat’

The Wall Street Journal

Heat President’s Long-Ago Move Could Pay Off If Miami Triumphs Over Spurs


Updated June 4, 2014

Image result for Pat Riley's photos

With the NBA finals kicking off Thursday night, who stands to gain in a Miami Heat ‘three-peat’? WSJ sports editor Geoff Foster joins the News Hub with details. Photo: Getty Images.

If the Miami Heat prevail over the San Antonio Spurs for their third straight NBA title, it would represent yet another triumph for Pat Riley, the legendary, slick-haired team president. It would give him 10 championship rings, one for each finger. (more…)

A closer look at the billions of dollars Netflix, Amazon and Hulu are spending on original content

June 4, 2014
by Samantha Bookman

How much are online video providers spending on original content this year? While Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX) has always been pretty open about the amount of money it’s dedicating to its original series, others like Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) and Hulu are not so forthcoming.

Sussing out how much money OTT providers are dedicating just to original series is a task that industry analysts spend a fair amount of time on. But in most cases they can only estimate dollar figures, and often only a rough guess at the total amount a given provider is spending for all its content acquisition.

“We can maybe identify $500 million to $750 million of content deals per year of the companies we do cover. But (it’s) impossible to know as it is a snapshot,” Michael Nathanson of MoffettNathanson Research told FierceOnlineVideo.

With that in mind, here’s a stab at the dollar amounts for content acquisition–both existing, non-exclusive content and original, exclusive content–of three top online video companies: Amazon, Hulu and Netflix. We also take a look at how content spending has grown at these providers in the last three years.


Netflix House of Cards
(Image source: Netflix)

Among all three providers, Netflix is the easiest to track when it comes to spending on original, exclusive content. The SVOD provider routinely breaks down the numbers in its quarterly earnings reports. And, while it is far and away the biggest spender on original content, it still takes a conservative tack. Netflix CEO Reed Hastings told investors that the provider will keep spending on its original series below 10 percent of its total content acquisition budget.

That’s still a hefty sum–about $400 million, based on Netflix’s stated content budget for 2014 of between $3 billion and $4 billion. But some of its properties, most notably House of Cards with its reported $100 million production cost, eat up a big chunk of that set-aside amount. (more…)

The second-largest religion in each state

The Washington Post

Reid Wilson June 4

Christianity is by far the largest religion in the United States; more than three-quarters of Americans identify as Christians. A little more than half of us identify as Protestants, about 23 percent as Catholic and about  2 percent as Mormon.

But what about the rest of us? In the Western U.S., Buddhists represent the largest non-Christian religious bloc in most states. In 20 states, mostly in the Midwest and South, Islam is the largest non-Christian faith tradition. And in 15 states, mostly in the Northeast, Judaism has the most followers after Christianity. Hindus come in second place in Arizona and Delaware, and there are more practitioners of the Baha’i faith in South Carolina than anyone else.

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All these data come from the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, which conducts a U.S. Religion Census every 10 years. Here’s what their map of the second-most-practiced religions looks like:

Source: 2010 U.S. Religion Census, sponsored by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies

And here’s the county-level map of second-largest religions after Christianity: (more…)

Telefonica Mexico to focus on competing with Slim in mobile


MEXICO CITY  Tue Jun 3, 2014

People are reflected as they walk past Spanish telecom group Telefonica's flagship store in central Madrid November 8, 2013 file photo.  REUTERS/Sergio Perez

People are reflected as they walk past Spanish telecom group Telefonica’s flagship store in central Madrid November 8, 2013 file photo.


(Reuters) – The Mexican unit of Spain’s Telefonica said on Tuesday it will focus on expanding its mobile business rather than adding new services as it tries to capitalise on a regulatory overhaul and steal market share from telecoms tycoon Carlos Slim.

Mexico is in the midst of a major shake-up of its telecommunications sector, dominated by Slim, whose closest competitor in the mobile market is Telefonica.

The new rules create a so-called universal concession, which will allow companies to offer triple and quadruple play services to customers in mobile, fixed-line, Internet and TV.

Francisco Gil Diaz, Telefonica’s chairman for Mexico and Central America, said cell phone users were the priority.

“For now we’re more interested in deepening our presence in the mobile market,” he told Reuters in an interview. “We aren’t seeing television as part of our service offering.” (more…)

Justice Department Plans to Begin a Review of Music Licensing Rules

The New York Times


The music industry has been complaining loudly in recent years about outdated federal regulation. Now it finally has a chance to do something about it.

On Wednesday, the Justice Department plans to announce that it will review the 73-year-old regulatory agreements that govern Ascap and BMI, two groups that act as licensing clearinghouses for a range of outlets that use music, including radio stations, websites and even restaurants and doctors’ offices. Billions of dollars in royalties are at stake, and the lobbying fight that is very likely to unfold would pit Silicon Valley giants like Pandora and Google against music companies and songwriter groups.

Ascap, or the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, and BMI, also known as Broadcast Music Inc., are two of the oldest licensing groups in music publishing, the side of the music business that deals with copyrights for songwriting, as opposed to recordings. These groups, known as performing rights organizations, each represent millions of songs, and together collect close to $2 billion a year in royalties. But they say that their ability to collect fair rates for their music in the digital age is undermined by the government’s regulatory agreements, known as consent decrees.

The Justice Department’s review calls for a 60-day period for public comments about the consent decrees. The department could then recommend changes to regulation, which would be reviewed by judges in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, in Manhattan. (more…)

Univision’s Massive World Cup Lineup Includes Live-Streaming 64 Matches on Mobile, Online


Univision World Cup Programing
MAY 30, 2014

Hispanic media company has exclusive Spanish-language rights to soccer tourney telecasts in U.S.

NY Digital Editor@xpangler

Univision Communications will feed the futbol frenzy for the FIFA World Cup this summer, with plans that include dedicating the Univision Deportes Network to 24-hour coverage of the world’s biggest sporting event and live-streaming all 64 matches on mobile apps and online.

Disney/ESPN and Univision have split up U.S. broadcast rights for the Brazil-hosted World Cup, which runs from June 12 to July 13, 2014. Univision has exclusive rights to Spanish-language telecasts in the States; Disney has English-language rights for broadcasts it will carry across ABC, ESPN and other properties including digital platforms, plus Portuguese and select matches in Korean.

Univision Deportes Network (UDN), which launched in 2012 and is available in about 35 million homes, will deliver more 2014 World Cup content than any other U.S. network, including 56 live matches (which will be simulcast on the flagship Univision Network). UDN’s programming will be focused exclusively on the World Cup around the clock starting Monday, June 9, for the duration of the event. (more…)

Latin American Bitcoin Exchange Launches with $2 Million Investment

CoinDesk Bitcoin News

Pete Rizzo
Published on May 30, 2014

Buenos Aires-based real-time bitcoin and litecoin exchange has officially launched with the goal of providing what its founders call the Latin American market’s “first regional exchange”.

The news follows the company’s soft launch this March, with the formal unveiling representing the company’s introduction to the wider Latin American ecosystem it aims to target. To date, says it has enlisted users in Colombia, Mexico, Spain and the US, though it aims to soon expand to more countries.

Perhaps most importantly, however, the exchange will also service its home market of Argentina, where a volatile local currency and a high black market demand for USDhave created a burgeoning bitcoin ecosystem that could prove to become an integral foothold for the industry.

Francisco Buero, the company’s chief operating officer, framed as a company that will seek to become a trusted digital currency trading and banking alternative to the already robust local market. (more…)


Nielsen Logo


Just about everyone connects with music, but where we live plays a big part of how we listen to, buy and engage with our tunes. For example, music aficionados in the Pacific region (California, Alaska, Oregon, Hawaii and Washington) make up the largest group of subscription streamers in the U.S., at more than 7.5 percent. Meanwhile, tune enthusiasts in the Mountain region (Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming) rank second-highest for listening to music (CDs, digital tracks, albums, etc.) as a primary activity—meaning they listen specifically to listen rather than being in a space where music is playing in the background. When you add in background music, the Mountain region boasts one of the highest overall listening rates across the country.

5 Takeaways From Mary Meeker: There is No Tech Bubble and Young Viewers Still Love Live TV

By  on May 29, 2014

5 Takeaways From Mary Meeker: There is No Tech Bubble and Young Viewers Still Love Live TV

The financial analyst turned venture capitalist offers a new report on how consumer habits are changing, and what that will mean for businesses around the world

Mary Meeker’s annual Internet trends report is a great way to know what is happening in the world around you (or at least online). The Morgan Stanley analyst turned venture capitalist offers a new report every year walking people through how consumer habits are changing, and what that will mean for businesses around the world.

If you get the chance to look at the full slideshow, please do so at the bottom of this post. In case you do not want to read through 144 slides, here are the cliff notes.

The Pain for Print Newspapers and Magazines Is Not Over. Advertisers are spending 19 percent of their media budget on print newspapers when consumers are only spending five percent of their media time reading them. That imbalance will have to correct itself, and you can guess where the money is headed: mobile devices. (more…)

How Super Producer Rick Rubin Gets People To Do Their Best Wor


Ruth Blatt Contributor

You sit, eyes closed, and turn your attention inward. You focus your attention on an immediate experience, perhaps your breath or a mantra. You become more aware of yourself as a body breathing. When thoughts or emotions come up, you observe them with curiosity, openness and acceptance. Then you bring your attention back to the present. Each moment is a new experience. You enter an intense state of relaxation and alertness.

What does this have to do with producing hit records? According to Rick Rubin, a lot.

Rick Rubin has produced numerous platinum-selling and award winning albums. Some of the albums he produced are considered classics, like thrash-metal band Slayer’s Reign in Blood or early hip-hop albums by the Beastie Boys, Run-DMC and LL Cool J. He has produced career-rejuvenating comeback albums by Johnny Cash, Black Sabbath and the Dixie Chicks. He initiated genre-bending collaborations, such as the rap-rock hybrid “Walk This Way” by Run-DMC and Aerosmith, and Johnny Cash’s covering of a Nine Inch Nails song. According to Eminem, who worked with Rubin on The Marshall Mathers LP 2, Rubin has an uncanny ability “to dip in and out of different genres of music and master all of them.”

Rick Rubin. Photo by Annabel MehranRick Rubin. Photo by Annabel Mehran

But what’s really impressive is how he gets people’s best work out of them. As Metallica’s James Hetfield said, when they wanted to people “to really hear Metallica,” they brought in Rick Rubin to produce. This ability to bring out the full potential of others is essential to all managers and leaders. How does Rubin do this so consistently and with such diverse people? By applying his experience as a life-long practitioner of meditation. (more…)