Digital Daily Dozen: 1/5/16

AMC Networks Makes New Deal With NCTC  (Broadcasting & Cable) 

AMC Networks and the National Cable Television Cooperative said they reached a new carriage agreement. The two sides were at loggerheads as their deal expired over the New Year’s weekend. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the new agreement covers AMC channels including AMC, BBC America, IFC, Sundance.   

Yahoo Turns Off Its Video Service Yahoo Screen as Fewer People Tune in (Ad Age) 

Yahoo has shut down Yahoo Screen, the portal’s digital video service whose U.S. traffic has declined 25% since February 2013. The service is no longer listed on Yahoo’s home page, and people who try to navigate to it directly are redirected to the portal’s home page. 

Netflix Nearing Russia Launch (Hollywood Reporter) 

The streaming video giant, which has so far announced 2016 launches in South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan, will initially offer its service on smart TV sets in Russia. 

Meet Sidewalk Labs, Google’s Company That’s Trying to Fix Cities and the Internet All at Once (Recode) 

In June, Google created Sidewalk Labs, an “urban innovation company” — a firm built to apply tech solutions to cities. Its first move? It formed another company. Intersection — a merger of an outdoor ad and design firm — will unveil a long-awaited free gigabit wireless network across New York City, called LinkNYC.   

FCC Pushes Back Review Of Charter-TWC (Bloomberg) 

Regulators pushed back by two weeks their informal deadline to complete a review of Charter Communications Inc.’s purchase of Time Warner Cable. The FCC needs more time to examine recent filings on the deal’s potential impact to the distribution of Time Warner’s regional sports networks and Charter’s residential pricing.   

Activision Acquires Major League Gaming (TV News Check)

Call of Duty publisher Activision Blizzard Inc. announced plans Monday to buy Major League Gaming in a move to push deeper into e-sports. The deal to purchase the 12-year-old competitive gaming organizer is reportedly worth $46 million.   

At CES, 4K TV takes to the airwaves, too (USA Today) 

The future of 4K Ultra HD TV is among the most-anticipated topics at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. Updates are expected here about standards for improved picture quality, as well as the availability of more content coming on 4K Blu-ray Discs and increased streaming options.      

FCC BROADBAND REPORT (Telecompetitor) 

In the latest actual vs. advertised broadband speed debate, most broadband providers are delivering the speeds they advertise, according to the FCC’s latest “Measuring Broadband America” report. The main exceptions are DSL-based broadband providers, said the FCC, which bases its findings on the experiences of volunteer panelists. 

COMING SOON: 50 GIGABIT STATES  (Telecompetitor- Commentary) 

It’s been almost three years since former FCC Chair Julius Genachowski set a goal of having at least one gigabit network in every state by 2015. The year is now over and by Telecompetitor’s tally, we didn’t quite make it – but we’re close. By our tally at least one net operator has announced plans to offer gigabit service in every state.   

FCC WIRELESS REPORT (Telecompetitor) 

The nation’s four largest wireless service providers – AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon—had a combined market share of 98.5% as of year-end 2014, leaving all other wireless providers combined with only 1.5% of the market, according to a report by the FCC. The top four controlled only about two-thirds of the market in 2003.   

New WiFi Coming For Connected Objects (Fortune)  

Soon your new gadgets will come with a new flavor of Wi-Fi, the radio technology that allows your digital devices to connect to the Internet without blowing through your cellular data cap. This new version isn’t designed for these gadgets, however. Instead, it will be made for the network of connected devices in your home.   

Yelp Manager Offers Insight into Community Engagement (Media Shift) 

The vast majority of students live and breathe social media connections. We tap into virtual communities for personal and professional reasons, integrating them with our “real-world” lives. At least at the individual level. But what of the notion that online community can enhance and support in-real-life-community on a larger scale? 

India deserves better than Mark Zuckerberg’s watered-down Internet  (Washington Post- Commentary) 

Mark Zuckerberg is taking intense fire in India over an initiative that his organization launched, to provide limited Internet access to the masses. He seems genuine in his desire to bring digital equality to the world: in an op-ed for The Times of India, he defended this initiative, called Free Basics.