model 2c

TV-Length Ads Becoming More Common in US Online Video


FreeWheel-US-Online-Video-Ad-Views-by-Creative-Length-in-Q2-Sept2013Half of rights-managed US video ad views during Q2 were for 30-second spots, the historical standard ad length for broadcast TV, according to the latest quarterly report [download page] from FreeWheel. The proportion of ad views represented by 30-second spots has slowly increased from 43% in Q2 2012, as 15-second spots gradually recede. The researchers indicate that this signals a shift towards a linear TV-type viewing experience online. Notably, completion rates tended to remain consistent across 15- and 30-second spots during the quarter.

For digital pure-play networks, completion rates averaged 73% for 30-second pre-rolls (71% for 15-second spots), 94% for 30-second mid-rolls (versus 95%) and 61% for 30-second post-rolls (compared to 43% for 15-second spots). The figures were similar for linear + digital networks: 76% for 30-second pre-rolls (77% for 15-second pre-rolls); 91% for 30-second mid-rolls (versus 97%); and 63% for 30-second post-rolls (versus 61%).

FreeWheel has described the “Linear + Digital” model as generating the “majority of… revenue from linear TV services and also offering content on IP-based environment,” as well as being “focused on diverse mix of short, mid, and long-form content, with an emphasis on driving high ad loads.” The “Digital Pure-Play” model, by contrast, is characterized by its exclusive operation in IP-based environments, “either by aggregating third-party premium content and/or developing original premium content.” In this case, the “business models [a! re] focus! ed on video view growth through syndicated distribution of largely short-form content.”

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Thursday, September 12th, 2013 news No Comments

New Zealand Parliament bans software patents with a 117-4 vote


DNP New Zealand bans software patents after a landslide vote in Parliament

After five years of debate and a 117-4 vote, New Zealand’s Parliament has passed a bill that says computer programs are not considered inventions and are therefore ineligible for patents. However, the phrasing of the bill is flexible enough to provide some leeway. Since “products or processes” are understood to be patentable inventions, software that is integral to the implementation of a process designed to improve hardware can be included in the terms of a patent application. The text of the bill, intended to replace the outdated Patents Act of 1953, states, “Protecting software by patenting is inconsistent with the open source model, and its proponents oppose it. A number of submitters argued that there is no ‘inventive step’ in software development, as ‘new’ software invariably builds on existing software.” You can come to your own conclusions on the matter by checking out the bill at the source link below.


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Thursday, August 29th, 2013 news No Comments

drag2share: EA revenue from downloads and web now overtaking that of disc-based games


Real Racing 3

If you think EA’s bottom line is primarily driven by endless Madden sequels, think again. In reporting its fiscal first quarter results, the studio has revealed that its digital businesses — DLC, mobile and the web — now generate more official revenue ($482 million) than disc-based games and distribution ($467 million). The company isn’t breaking down these figures, although it says that DLC and mobile are the main factors. We do know that iOS plays a crucial role — EA says that Apple is now its largest retail partner in terms of pure sales. The revenue shift isn’t completely surprising when the company is big on flagship mobile games and the free-to-play model, but it suggests that discs are losing some of their luster at one of the world’s largest developers.

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Thursday, July 25th, 2013 news No Comments

Social Media Drives a Small Share of Online Consumers to Retail Sites


Largest portion of social media traffic comes from Facebook

Digital resources have upended the traditional linear path-to-purchase model, with consumers now relying on a number of resources to shop for and purchase goods online. Social media has certainly played a role in that process, but research from L2 Think Tank found that little traffic was flowing from social media to retail sites.

Among all traffic sources, search engines dominated, leading 35.5% of traffic to retailers, followed by direct web browsing (33.9%), referrals (18.4%) and email (8.7%). Social media pushed 2.4% of traffic, above only display ads, which led 1.1% of visitors to retail sites.

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Wednesday, July 24th, 2013 news No Comments

Joshua Kushner Has Quietly Amassed 30 Employees And $40 Million To Shake Up Health Care With A Startup, Oscar


josh kushner kevin systrom prime minister

You won’t find Joshua Kushner tweeting his whereabouts, tagged in Instagram photos or blogging about tech.

Although the 28-year-old dates a Victoria’s Secret model, the entrepreneur and venture capitalist keeps to himself. He rarely gives interviews and his firm’s website, Thrive Capital, doesn’t even list the companies he’s invested in, despite an impressive portfolio which includes Instagram, NastyGal, Fab and GroupMe.

That may be why Kushner has been able to keep his plans to disrupt the health care industry quiet for nearly two years. But under everyone’s nose he’s poached engineers from Google, plucked co-founders from Tumblr and Microsoft, and raised $40 million.

The company Kushner is launching with Microsoft’s former director of health care, Kevin Nazemi and former head of engineering and operations at Tumblr, Mario Schlosser, is called Oscar. It will be a full-blown insurance company that rivals longstanding entities such as Aetna and UnitedHealth. But Oscar will be transparent, making bills and charges easy for customers to consume via technology.

Oscar is set to launch in January 2014. Kushner’s team was just granted a New York health insurance license this month. Oscar will begin enrolling New Yorkers this fall who are seeking insurance under Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

Raising $40 million before launch isn’t always smart. It didn’t work out for Sean Parker, who raised $34 million for a social video company Airtime, or Bill Nguyen who raised $41 million fo! r Color which flopped. But we’re told all $40 million of this fundraise, which comes from Khosla Ventures, Thrive Capital and Founders Fund, is necessary. Reinventing the health care industry isn’t easy, and most of the money Kusher has raised isn’t operational. When you have an insurance company, there are reserve requirements. Much of the $40 million will be stashed away in case of emergency, thanks to industry regulations.

Oscar is Kushner’s third venture. His first, Vostu, was a gaming company that rivaled Zynga in Brazil but has since gone through a series of layoffs. Thrive Capital, the investment firm Kushner started three years ago, has raised more than $150 million to invest in startups.


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Thursday, July 18th, 2013 news No Comments

drag2share: Why Millionaires Are Lining Up To Help Students Pay Off DebtHow does it work?What’s in it for the backers?


Upstart, a company aimed at helping college students-turned-entrepreneurs raise funds for business endeavors (and pay off lingering student debt), is barely a year old and already has wealthy entrepreneurs lining up to give young people a leg up.

They must be doing something right. Since launching in November 2012,  more than 200 backers have made 1,000 unique investments in Upstart projects. Of the 120 Upstarts on the site now, about half have been successfully funded.

L.A.-based entrepreneur Tony Safoian was an early supporter of the site. He’s run his own successful cloud computing and IT consulting firm, SADA Systems, for over a decade, working closely with Upstart’s founders back in their Google days.

“It took me a while to understand the business model, but I definitely feel like [Upstart] is potentially groundbreaking,” Safoian told Business Insider. “I always like being on the ground floor, not taking a massive risk but … literally being a customer or a member and getting integrated that way.”

How does it work?

After passing a rigorous background check, would-be entrepreneurs build a fundraising page with their business proposal and credentials laid out, just like an artist might raise funds on Kickstarter. Then, the site’s cache of “backers” (i.e. investors) have their pick of the litter. Investments start at $100, and backers can fund however much or! little they’d like. On the flip side, Upstarts can also deny investments from backers if they choose.

What sets Upstart apart from other crowdfunding sites is the option backers have to also offer themselves up as a mentor.

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Thursday, July 11th, 2013 news No Comments

The Secret Algorithm That Controls Everything About Orange Juice


The Secret Algorithm That Controls Everything About Orange JuiceIf you ever wondered how orange juice can always taste so damn perfect every time you have it, it’s because of an algorithm. Coca Cola, which makes Simply Orange and Minute Maid, has an algorithm called the “Black Book” which allows it to standardize Mother Nature. It’s crazy.

We knew the odd process that orange juice companies followed to create consistently delicious OJ: strip the oxygen which strips the flavor and then artificially flavor the juice with “flavor packs” made by flavor and fragrance companies. What we didn’t know was how amazingly detailed the algorithm used to figure everything out and how much it controlled of the OJ squeezing process.

Business Week’s fascinating report on big box OJ discovered how ridiculously impressive (and scary) the whole process is. The architect of Coke’s OJ model, Revenue Analytics consultant Bob Cross who also built an algorithm for Delta for airline efficiency told Business Week that the Black Book, “is definitely one of the most complex applications of business analytics. It requires analyzing up to 1 quintillion decision variables to consistently deliver the optimal blend, despite the whims of Mother Nature.”

The Black Book has data on over 600 flavors that go into an orange, detailing the acidity, sweetness, etc. of each batch of juice. Once it profiles the raw juice, it spits out how to blend the juice to get into the perfectly consistent taste we’re all used to. Even deeper, Black Book can analyze weather patterns, crops, etc. to adjust any sort of juicing plans. Black Book even uses satellites to monitor crops and tells farmers the optimal time to pick the fruit. It’s considered every possible angle for orange juice, with math.

Read more about how an algorithm dictates OJ at Business Week. [Business Week]

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Saturday, February 2nd, 2013 news No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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