Glowing press reviews of NBC Universal and News Corp's joint-venture Internet video Web site, Hulu.com, now promise even better news. With some $70 million in total revenues -- virtually all advertising revenues -- Hulu's numbers are getting close to, dare we say, YouTube.
Tag: News Corp
News Corp. Backs Down On Anti-Google Stance, Plans Searchable Article Previews, Keeps Paywall Intact
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. is planning once again to let stories from its paywalled UK newspaper The Times get indexed by the search giant Google. This reverses a two-year-old policy in which News Corp.’s UK newspaper division, News International, dramatically yanked stories from Google as it prepared a paywall to better monetize that content and do away with low-value single-story visitors from sites like Google.
Maybe newspapers really are dying, as some media analysts have been predicting for decades, but apparently that does not apply to newspaper wars. A doozy is shaping up at the moment between The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.
When Time Warner Cable was tussling over fees with the News Corporation, it did something that would have been unthinkable in the backrooms where deals were once struck: it hired a political consultant to mount a public campaign against its own client.
Conan O'Brien's exit from NBC may allow the Fox network to jump back into late-night television. But first Fox has to sell the idea to its corporate brass and to the managers of the 205 Fox stations, some of whom have reservations. Fox has been mulling a late-night talk show with Mr. O'Brien, who is likely to host his last episode of "The Tonight Show" on Friday after a dispute with NBC over plans to push back the show's air time by half an hour. Fox has said it won't broach the subject in earnest until Mr. O'Brien leaves NBC, which is finalizing the terms of the comedian's departure.
The irony of the report that The New York Times is going to start metering readers and charging those who come back more often is this: They would would end up charging — and, they should fear, sending away — the readers who are worth the most while serving free those who are worth least.
News Corp has unveiled its biggest restructuring of Dow Jones since its $5.6bn takeover of the financial information business in 2007, merging its consumer and enterprise divisions. The reorganisation will see the departure of Clare Hart, president of the enterprise business, who had driven a more web-based strategy for a business dependent on distributing its newswires content over the terminals sold by Thomson Reuters and Bloomberg.
A year-end flurry of ad spending helped moderate steep declines at some newspapers and magazines, and has fueled an uptick at others, raising hopes for a recovery in 2010. Still, following a brutal 2009, when scores of publications closed or made drastic cutbacks, publishers remain wary of declaring an ad rebound as marketers selectively reopen their wallets. Publishing executives attribute the recent influx of ad money in part to marketers hurrying to spend the remainder of their annual ad budgets after doling out those funds sparingly earlier in the year amid fears of an economic collapse.
Time Warner Cable Inc. and News Corp. traded barbs on Wednesday as they face a New Year's deadline in their landmark fight over TV-programming fees. If the fight remains unresolved it will threaten millions of cable-TV subscribers with the loss of Fox broadcast programs, including big football games, in coming days.
Governments can best help the news industry save itself by getting out of its way, Rupert Murdoch said on Tuesday, as he used a Washington podium to call for a relaxation of US media ownership rules. Unsuccessful publishers should be allowed to fail just as “a carmaker who makes cars no one wants to buy should fail,” the News Corp chairman and chief executive said, adding that government assistance “subsidises the failures and penalises the successes”.
As newspapers and old media companies have seen their revenues shrink, they have essentially done one of two things: found ways to embrace the web or blamed Google for their problems. Now with the heat being turned up on Google (Google) by News Corp and Rupert Murdoch, the search giant has decided to appease angry media outlets and give them more control over how their links are treated in Google Search and Google News.
Lachlan Murdoch, the eldest son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, is closing in on his second deal in as many weeks, with a joint offer for a group of trade magazines, including Billboard and The Hollywood Reporter, and related exhibitions. The offer for the bulk of Nielsen Business Media, which could be announced as early as this week according to one person familiar with the negotiations, represents Mr Murdoch’s most prominent US move since he stepped down from executive duties at News Corp in 2005.
In the discussion about news, there’s always a divide – because news loves divides. The splits have been old v. new, MSM v. blogs, professional v. amateur, institutional v. entrepreneurial, and lately paid v. free. But I fear another divide we’re beginning to see develop is walled v. open. The legacy players – in what I believe is their last-ditch effort to save their old ways, models, and empires — are threatening to put up walls. News Corp. is forever rumored to be putting up both pay walls and more walls to keep Google’s hordes of Huns (aka us useless asshats) out. Some say: Fine, digital suicide couldn’t happen to a better mogul. But I say we should fear the precedent, the balkanization of the web into isolated worlds. It’s true that all the data on the web is not today available via search — content trapped in data bases, in Flash, in comments, in video — though I see continuing efforts to bring that content into the tent. The momentum is toward including ever more data. But now come Murdoch and Microsoft, threatening to take their balls and go home. It’s their right to do so; as Google always points out, it’s also easy to do so.
When a media industry insider last week floated the idea of an exclusive deal to list News Corp. content on Microsoft’s Bing search engine, stiffing Google in the process, it drew some predictable responses. Bloggers and technology analysts crowed that Rupert Murdoch, News Corp.’s septuagenarian chief executive, had conclusively proved that he just didn’t understand the Internet. Some people in the newspaper business said hooray for Uncle Rupert, standing up for the value of old-fashioned content and telling the geeks with their algorithms to get lost. Google, meanwhile, made the reassuring noises it does anytime anyone raises the possibility that its goals, and those of the media companies whose content it indexes, might not be 100 percent aligned. Google said it provided news organizations’ Web sites with 100,000 clicks a minute, every one of which “offers a business opportunity for the publishers to show ads, win loyal readers and sell subscriptions.”
The Empire always strikes back. Every revolution inspires a counter-revolution. Luke Skywalker and the Rebel Alliance didn't win independence overnight — and neither, it seems, will the www. Microsoft is negotiating with News Corp to pay it to remove its content from Google's index. Uh-oh: the Empire — industrial-era business as usual — is striking back. Will the rebels be crushed? Not a chance. Blocking Google is about as smart as eating a pound of plutonium. Here's why MicroFox is making a big mistake.
The Washington Post is closing the last domestic bureaux it had outside its home town, in a tacit admission that it will no longer attempt to compete with the few US titles attempting to be national newspapers. The one-time home of Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, whose investigative reporting on the Watergate scandal hastened the resignation of President Richard Nixon, will shut its offices in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles at the end of the year.
Microsoft has had discussions with News Corp over a plan that would involve the media company being paid to “de-index” its news websites from Google, setting the scene for a search engine battle that could offer a ray of light to the newspaper industry.
Hulu has shot down reports that it planned to start charging users, at least for the majority of its content. News Corp deputy chairman Chase Carey (shown) was quoted at a conference today saying the video service would be charging users in 2010, though "some" content would remain free. News Corp is a part owner of Hulu. "I think a free model is a very difficult way to capture the value of our content. I think what we need to do is deliver that content to consumers in a way where they will appreciate the value," Carey was quoted as saying by Broadcasting & Cable. A Hulu rep said the company's strategy of offering high-quality content supported by advertising remains unchanged, while leaving the door to adding paid content.
The Wall Street Journal has launched what it’s called a LinkedIn Killer. How’s that for self-serving promotion? But responses to the professional network from News Corp’s flagship publication have been lukewarm. It’s difficult enough for printed media companies to transfer their customer base and revenue generation from tangible to virtual, in the form of websites. Is a LinkedIn competitor the best way for WSJ to go?