Spotify to Announce “New Direction” on November 30

Publication: Mashable

Title: Spotify Hints at ‘New Direction’

Article by: Samantha Murphy

http://mashable.com/2011/11/21/spotify-event/

 

On Wednesday November 30th, Spotify will be holding it’s first US Press event.  Invitations went out a week ago and indicate that the company has “exciting new” to share.

The call for a press event is happening at a time when Spotify is facing competitive pressure- especially from the free Google Music Service, “which allows users to upload, share and browse songs, and then listen to them on the go via cloud storage on Android devices.”  In addition, there is growing concern over the streaming aspect of the Spotify business.  Many labels and publishers have pulled out of various other streaming services, because it reportedly hurt record sales.

“At Spotify, we continually strive to innovate and deliver exciting new experiences for our users,” Spotify said in an email statement to Mashable. “In New York on November 30th, we are holding our first press conference to unveil the latest major development from Spotify – and a new direction for the company.”

The press event on November 30 will explore what’s on the horizon for Spotfiy.  The event will be broadcasted online.   Speculation points to the possible announcement of a Spotify music store.

Ashton Kutcher Lets PR Team Manage @Aplusk

Publication: Adage

Title: After Penn State Flub, Ashton Kutcher Will Let PR Team Manage Twitter Account: Picked the Wrong Week to Get Indignant Over Paterno’s Firing

Article by: Ken Wheaton

http://adage.com/article/adages/penn-state-flub-ashton-kutcher-pr-team-manage-twitter-account/230955/

 

Ashton Kutcher has announced that he will no longer manage his Twitter account, @Aplusk, after he tweeted : “How do you fire Jo Pa? #insult #noclass as a hawkeye fan I find it in poor taste.”  Alledgedly he tweeted this before he had full knowledge of the situation at Penn State. He announced his account will be managed by his team at Katalyst, so that the quality of the content may be reviewed before it’s published.

Adage sites that:

“Gawker, among others, picked up the story, calling his silence “the only good thing to come out of the Penn State scandal” and pointing out that “standing up for Paterno, who barely blinked when he learned his underling was a potential child predator back in 2002, is at odds with Ashton’s … crusade against child sex slavery.””

This secondary management seems to be an increasing trend among celebrity tweeters.  Although, it seems a little against the spirit of Twitter- which is sort of supposed to be about personal, impulsive updates.  On the other hand, celebrities are really more “brands” now and not “personalities.”  Plus, celebrity PR managers must feel better about having their clients tweets censored a little before they’re published.

YouTube Announces Channel Strategy

Publication: Adweek

Title: YouTube Announces Channels: Video site will feel a little more like cable TV

Article by: D.M. Levine

http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/youtube-announces-channels-136180

 

YouTube has formally announced their long-awaited channel strategy.  YouTube is expanding its channel lineup to include new offerings from a number of partners, including “well-known personalities and brands in the Hollywood, music, news, and sports worlds.”

According to Adweek:

“Under the new system, content creators—like Vice Media or the video game lifestyle network Machinima, for example—will have a dedicated channel on the site that they will control, continually updating it with video content. YouTube, for its part, will sell ads against that video inventory.”

YouTube will be organizing its site the way cable providers organize their channels.  YouTube’s global head of content partnerships Robert Kyncl explains that, “Today, the Web is bringing us entertainment from an even wider range of talented producers, and many of the defining channels of the next are being born, and watched, on YouTube.”

YouTube is hoping that they will be able to get people to spend less time watching television and more time watching content on YouTube.

Why Artists Like Coldplay Aren’t Bringing New Albums to Spotify

Publication: Mashable

Title: Why Coldplay and Adele Aren’t Bringing New Albums to Spotify

Article by: Lauren Indvik

http://mashable.com/2011/10/27/coldplay-adele-streaming-services-spotify/

 

Coldplay has decided that it’s latest album, Mylo Xyloto, will not be available on Spotify or any other streaming music service– just yet.  Fans will need to buy the physical CD or mp3 downloads from e-music stores like iTunes.

There is a lot of speculation surrounding this decision.  Some think Coldplay wants their audience to hear the album as “one cohesive work” (even though you can buy the singles on iTunes).  Some think it’s more financially motivated.  Mashable reports,

“Recording artists only make about three-tenths of a cent every time one of their songs is streamed, and 20 cents for every song sold on iTunes, according to estimates published in Rolling Stone.”

So it would make sense, financially, for Coldplay to hold off making their music available for free, especially since they have a very strong fanbase.  Coldplay aren’t the only ones who have made the decision to not partner with music streaming services.  Adele’s lastest album, 21, for instance, is not available on Spotfiy.  Her older album, 19, is.

It will be interesting to see if this trend plays out for less established artists, who aren’t necessarily guaranteed huge sales.  My guess is that less established/less popular artists are more focused on trying to get their music out there, in which case, services like Spotify can really help.

YouTube Streams Coldplay Concert

Publication: Mashable

Title: Coldplay Live Streams Free Concert on YouTube

Article by: Zachary Sniderman

http://mashable.com/2011/10/26/coldplay-livestream-youtube/

On Wednesday October 26, Coldplay streamed a live concert on YouTube via the American Express Unstaged performance series.  The concert was physically held in Madrid and American Express rented out four large screens in Times Square to broadcast the concert- with audio too!

If you watched online, you could have viewed the concert from different cameras- director’s cut, main stage, and aerial view were options.  There was also a live chat held on YouTube.
YouTube had also used this format earlier this year at Coachella.  It seems that both events were very successful, so I’d expect more of the same in the future.

New Livestream

Publication: Mashable

Title: Livestream Reinvents Itself, Becomes the “New Livestream”

Article by: Zachary Sniderman

http://mashable.com/2011/10/27/new-livestream-relaunch/

Livestream is relaunching its brand under the new name “New Livestream.”  It will essentially be building on its current model by adding social and multimedia tools.  Livestream users- both viewers and hosts- will be able to stream the event and add real-time elements such as photos, messages and media clips.

According to Mashable, the player will have “adaptive video quality,” meaning, the videostream will be automatically scaled depending on a user’s internet connection and computer speed.  Hopefully, this will result in less skipping/pauses/crashing.

New Livestream is currently in the beta phase of development, and expects to be fully up and running  for free and premium users by April 2012.

New Guidelines for Spirits Advertising (US and Europe)

Publication: FoodBev.com

Title: New regulations for alcohol advertising online

Article by: Rebecca Prescott

http://www.foodbev.com/news/new-regulations-for-alcohol-advertising

 

The advertising of spirits through social media- namely blogs, networking sites, apps, and sites that run on user-generated content- will be the focus of new regulations and guidelines in the US and Europe.

With the rapid growth of social media use across all ages, the European Forum for Responsible Drinking (EFRD) and the Disilled Spirits Council of the US (DISCUS) are introducing new guidelines to ensure responsible spirits advertising in digital media.

 

According to FoodBev.com:

 

“The guidelines state that spirits marketers will:

  • Restrict access to official brand pages for users under 18 years old on social networking sites. When such registration does not exist, age affirmation mechanisms will be used prior to direct interaction with a consumer.
  • On channels not controlled by spirits marketers, only place advertising if the audience data shows more than 70% of viewers are above 18 years old.
  • Monitor brand pages on social networking sites to remove inappropriate user-​generated content within 48 hours.
  • Display clear privacy policies that ensure compliance with data protection and privacy rules and provide for a speedy unsubscribe process in direct marketing.
  • Include responsible drinking messages, preferably in the form of a consumer information website address in digital marketing communications, wherever practicable.”