Digital Daily Dozen: 11/23/15

Cord cutting worries spike anew (Media Life)   

When third quarter pay TV subscription data first started trickling out, it appeared the big declines in subscribers had eased. Indeed, that was true for a few providers. But it turns out the overall picture still points to significant cord cutting. Third quarter was the sixth consecutive quarter in which total pay TV subscriptions declined.   

NFL Targets Massive Payday in Thursday Night TV Deal (Hollywood Reporter) 

One of the last big sports rights opportunities for several years is about to become available to TV networks. The NFL’s Thursday Night Football is generating intense interest. A long-term pact is expected as NBCU seeks to outbid CBS and others for the last major sports package available for years.   

Fox, Time Warner, Comcast Dragged Into Legal Mess Surrounding Daily Fantasy Sports   

In the past month, DraftKings and FanDuel have been contending with several states that see the daily fantasy sports operators as illegal gambling. The two companies have also faced dozens of lawsuits throughout the nation. Now, for the first time, the legal intrigue has spread to media companies.   

Tow Report Details the Power and Promise of Crowdsourcing (Media Shift) 

When CNN recently announced it was ending its longstanding iReport crowdsourcing efforts to, instead, source stories directly from social media streams, it was a notable marker signaling how news organizations are making different choices about audience growth and engagement.  

Netizen Report: Bangladesh Bans Facebook and Chat Apps on ‘Security Grounds’ (Media Shift) 

The government of Bangladesh this week banned Facebook along with mobile chat apps Viber and WhatsApp in an apparent effort to maintain public order. When implementing the ban, the country’s Telecommunications Regulatory Commission mistakenly shut down the Internet altogether for roughly 75 minutes.   

Hulu CEO Says “Vast Majority” of Users Stick With Ad Option (Hollywood Reporter)

Hulu expects to grow its advertising and subscription revenue at roughly the same rate over the near-term despite having launched an ad-free option, CEO Mike Hopkins said Friday at the Paley International Council Summit in New York where he also explained the online video company’s original content strategy.   

WHY IT’S SO HARD TO KEEP UP WITH HOW THE US GOVERNMENT IS SPYING ON ITS OWN PEOPLE  (Washington Post- Commentary)  

Since 2013, Americans have gained immense insight about how the government conducts digital spying programs, largely thanks to the revelations made by former security contractor Edward Snowden. But a new report shows it’s really hard to keep track of all the ways the United States is snooping on its own people.    

POLICE USED APPARENTLY ILLEGAL WIRETAPS TO MAKE HUNDREDS OF ARRESTS (USA Today)

Prosecutors in the Los Angeles (CA) suburb responsible for a huge share of the nation’s wiretaps almost certainly violated federal law when they authorized widespread eavesdropping that police used to make more than 300 arrests and seize millions of dollars in cash and drugs throughout the USA.   

STREAM TV (Wired) 

Comcast may have found a major loophole in the FCC’s net neutrality regulations. The company launched a new streaming video service for Comcast broadband customers. Stream TV allows you to watch HBO as well as live local TV stations on your computer, tablet or laptop. The catch is that the service will only work from your home.   

The ‘need’ to control encryption and The Big Lie  (Network World- Commentary)  

The truth of how the Paris terrorists communicated and coordinated their attacks turns out to be far more pedestrian than high-grade encryption: In a trash bin outside the Bataclan concert hall in Paris where 89 people were murdered, French police found an unlocked phone, without encryption of any kind.   

Fox To Stop Using Live+Same Day Ratings (The Wrap) 

Fox has become the first broadcast network to cease using Live + Same Day Nielsen ratings, which it shares both internally and externally with media outlets. The network’s chairmen-CEOs said the network will no longer issue those snapshot Nielsen numbers, instead holding out for three and seven-day delayed viewing ratings.  

Holiday Spots Moving From TV To Online (Washington Post) 

Shortly before Hallmark would have traditionally launched its seasonal commercial heart-warmers, the greeting-card giant made a surprising confession: This year, for the first time ever, it would spend nothing on holiday TV ads.   

The FCC Has Become A Law Unto Itself (The Hill)     

Free State Foundation President Randolph J. May: This year, the agency increasingly has claimed for itself “the power to impose sanctions upon those it regulates for actions the regulated parties could not have known in advance to be unlawful. This conduct ignores fundamental rule of law and due process norms.”