Digital Daily Dozen: 2/8/16

The Super Bowl Breaks a Streaming Record (Recode)  

The Super Bowl isn’t meant to be streamed, but there are a lot of people who want to stream the Super Bowl, anyway. And this year there were more than ever: CBS says the Broncos victory over the Panthers had a “record audience” streaming the game. What does that mean in numbers? CBS won’t say, for now.   

Google pushes further into virtual reality with new headset (Financial Times)  

Google is developing a new virtual-reality headset for smartphones, and adding extra support for the technology to its Android operating system, as it challenges Facebook’s Oculus for an early lead in Silicon Valley’s latest platform war. The new headset will be a successor to Cardboard. the cheap-and-cheerful mobile VR viewer.   

The Telecom Act of 1996 Struck the Right Federal-State Balance of Power (Inside Sources- Commentary by Stuart Brotman)  

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 was signed into law by President Clinton twenty years ago today. Since then, aggressive activities by the FCC, especially in recent years, have been aimed at expanding its powers through federal preemption–at the expense of individual states.      


Washington’s tech policy wonks are celebrating an anniversary this week: 20 years ago, President Bill Clinton signed the 1996 Telecommunications Act into law at the Library of Congress. Designed to de-regulate aspects of the telecom business, it was the first overhaul of the law that created the FCC in more than six decades.   


Some people deride the 1996 Act for not mentioning “the Internet” by name, but let’s not forget how the legislation laid out a new regulatory landscape for the Digital Age. Most importantly, Congress directed the FCC to preserve and advance the core American value that everyone must have access to “advanced communications.”  

Will MLB Advanced Media shut down NHL fan videos, GIFs? (Yahoo Sports)

Major League Baseball Advanced Media, whose partnership with the NHL led to an overhaul of that League’s digital properties, has earned a reputation for a few things. Like high quality streaming capabilities. Like state-of-the-art mobile apps. And, in the eyes of some fans, a draconian approach to user-created content.    

Starz Exec Calls Canada’s Cable TV Unbundling a “Great Service” to Rest of the World (Hollywood Reporter) 

Canada’s great cable unbundling isn’t a cross-border threat to American networks — it’s a learning experience. So said John Penney, Starz chief strategy officer, as he argued global operators will gain valuable intelligence when Canadian cable and satellite TV providers start allowing subscribers to purchase a skinny basic package March 1.

‘Snackable’ Branded Video Was All the Rage a Couple of Years Ago. Is It Already Dead? (Ad Week) 

Marketers have scaled back their attempts to gain traction with Vine content: Tubular Labs’ research revealed that only 32 percent of brands posted to the Twitter-owned app in the fourth quarter of 2015. Snapchat, which previously only allowed 10-second clips, is now letting Hollywood brands do 60- and 90-second video ads.   

BATTLE OVER NET NEUTRALITY (Silicon Valley- Commentary) 

If you thought the fight over net neutrality ended when the FCC issued its strong new “Open Internet” rules, think again. The new rules are under attack. Internet providers are challenging them in the courts and are trying to evade them with new kinds of business plans.    

Victoria’s Secret Sued Over Text-Message Ads (Media Post) 

A California resident has sued Victoria’s Secret for allegedly sending him almost 100 unwanted text message ads in a single day last November. Victoria’s Secret undertook a misguided effort to increase sales by causing the mass transmission of spam text message advertisements in the form of mobile alerts,” Michael Hannegan alleges. 

Twitter shuts down 125,000 Isis-related accounts (Financial Times) 

Twitter said it has shut down 125,000 accounts and stepped up its efforts to monitor extremist speech, as the company defends itself against critics who say that it has not done enough to fight extremist ideologies.   

As might be expected, keeping ISIS militants off the Internet is easier said than done (Network World) 

Reuters this morning has an interesting story about ongoing efforts in Iraq to keep Islamic State militants from using the Internet to recruit supporters. How? By keeping them off the Internet entirely. The entire effort seems doomed from the start.     

 Kanojia on Competing with Cable (TV News Check) 

The founder of startup TV service Aereo has a new offering that could shake up the cable industry again. His new Internet service, Starry, would compete with cable companies in big cities. He insists he’s not going after the cable industry — but his service would compete directly with cable companies’ residential and small-business offerings.