December 13, 2011

YouTube Acquires Copyright Management Firm RightsFlow

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YouTube CopyrightYouTube on Monday announced the acquisition of copyright management firm RightsFlow, a buyout they hope will provide the video streaming service with better management of licensing and royalty payment services.

RightsFlow works with music labels, artists, music services and distributors to manage music rights in the digital age.

YouTube hopes that the system will allow them to better manage the 48 hours of video uploaded to the service every minute, allowing for better treatment of the company’s creative community.

Writing about the acquisition YouTube Product Manager David King noted:

“By combining RightsFlow’s expertise and technology with YouTube’s platform, we hope to more rapidly and efficiently license music on YouTube, meaning more music for you all to enjoy, and more money for the talented people producing music.” read more

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December 8, 2011

Instagram Finally Coming To Android Smartphones, Company Hopes To Double Users

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Instagram for Android

Since it’s launch the popular photo sharing service Instagram has only been available for Apple iOS based devices and now the company has announced plans to launch a Google Android version of the program, a smart decision given Google’s nearly 50% smartphone market share.

With the launch of the new application Instagram believes they can double their current user database which includes more than 50 million active users.

Speaking at LeWeb in Paris Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom revealed:

“We have two people working on Android now,” and “I’m excited to be able to see our numbers today nearly double.”

At this time there is no timeline for the launch of the new Android app and Systrom wasn’t exactly forthcoming with details for the new program.  read more

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December 7, 2011

Facebook Subscribe Button Coming To Websites

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Facebook Subscribe ButtonThe team at Facebook has announced plans to roll out a “Subscribe” button for websites, yet another attempt by the social network to fully emerge their product in the digital landscape.

The program was announced at Le Web in Paris on Wednesday and according to Joanna Shields, vp and managing director for Facebook Europe, Middle East and Africa, the new plugin will allow site visitors to click on a button that will allow them to follow the news from a celebrity, journalist, public figure or any politician they choose on Facebook.

According to the launch report the program will only work for people who have already enabled Subscribe on Facebook.

News of the launch shouldn’t come as a surprise, Facebook began offering their subscribe features to some journalists and public figures in September.  read more

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December 6, 2011

Only 5% Of Adults Use Location Based Check-In Services

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Location Based Services - Adult Users Demographic

As location based check-in services such as Foursquare and Facebook Places attempts to make a bigger dent in the online market they may want to rethink how they target their adult demographic. That’s because adults in a recent study revealed that only 5% of older users take advantage of location based services and everything they offer.

Surveying 37,000 people the Forrester Group found that only 2% of adult users take advantage of location based services (LBS) at least once or more per week, while 1% of users claim to use the service once a month and 2% of users say they use the service but less than one time per month.

The heart of the issue appears to be that many adults don’t even realize that location based services exist, for example 70% of respondents said they didn’t even realize that location based check-in programs exist. That 70% statistics is however a vast improvement over the 84% of adult users who were unfamiliar with location based services in 2010.

Location based services also appear not to resonate with a subset of adults with 10% saying they have seen the programs used but have chosen not to use them and the remaining 14% say they have heard of the program but have never seen them actually used by anyone.  read more

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December 5, 2011

Facebook Acquires Gowalla, Will Not Receive User Data

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Gowalla FacebookThree years ago Gowalla launched as the main competitor to location based service Foursquare and now the team at Gowalla is moving to Facebook headquarters where they will help the world’s largest social network develop a robust sharing platform for location services.

Under the terms of the acquisition Gowalla will be shut down and the talent buy will allow the location based services employees to join the Facebook team.

Financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed at this time read more

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December 2, 2011

Zynga Hoping For $1 Billion IPO

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Zynga Dog LogoSocial gaming firm Zynga on Friday filed IPO documents with the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) that places the company’s initial price per share between $8.50 and $10.

If that pricing is met the company will have raised between $850 million and $1.15 billion with a total company evaluation of $7 billion.

Those numbers are no small amount, however the company that has created such viral hits as FarmVille, CityVille, and MafiaWars believes they are worth nearly half the valuation of the world’s largest gaming company Activision Blizzard ($14.2 billion).

While $7 billion may seem like a high amount for a relatively new gaming company it should be noted that before pulling their original IPO due to fears of market volatility the company’s valuation was believed to be closer to $10 billion.

While some analysts have mixed feels about Zynga, it’s believed that by selling such a large percentage of the company’s worth during their IPO (14.3% to be exact) they may be able to lessen that volatility. read more

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