A roundup of the week's key news from MediaVillage member companies and trends from the wider media industry. This week, networks hit by fantasy sports woes, Fox gets creative with branding, and both Edward Snowden and "South Park" join the ad blocking debate.
TV Ad Revenue Growth Threatened by Fantasy Sports Scrutiny
Nearly 60% of TV ad sales growth in Q3 came from fantasy sites, according to an analyst, helping boost revenue at media companies with sports programming, including Fox, CBS, NBC and ESPN, and driving up prices across the industry (via AdAge).
+ NBCU Acquires Programming From Universal Sports Network (via Broadcasting & Cable).
Fox Networks Group to Launch Creative Branding Solutions Company
Fox Networks Group (FNG) is partnering with former 20th Century Fox Film CCO Tony Sella, to form AKS Content, which will develop original content, integrations and promotions (via Broadway World).
+James Murdoch Talks Future of Advertising, Content Distribution and Fox Transition (via Variety).
Univision Launches Live Subscription-Video Service, Univision Now
Hispanic media giant is going over-the-top with the launch of Univision Now, a direct-to-consumer Internet video service priced at $5.99 per month (via Variety).
+Univision Revs Digital Operations to Court Multicultural, Multilingual Audiences (via Variety).
Hulu-Time Warner Deal Unlikely, and Shifting Content Licensing Strategy Could Be a Disaster, Analysts Say
A few industry watchers see the deal as not likely to happen, particularly under Hulu's current licensing model of next-day availability of broadcast content (via FierceOnlineVideo).
GroupM To Staff: Keep It Zipped On Remuneration, Media-Buying Questions
Memo from outgoing CEO Kelly Clark said the company intended to cooperate with the investigation, "but protecting the confidentiality of our client agreements is our primary responsibility," (via MediaPost).
Turner Revamps Top Net Marketing Team
"We are reinventing two market-leading brands, TBS and TNT, which calls for a forward-reaching, re-imagining of our marketing organization" (via Broadcasting & Cable).
Spotify Bets on Data to Lure Artists to its Platform
The company announced that artists and their managers can now access a new Fan Insights portal for free (via TechCrunch).
Edward Snowden Says It's Your 'Duty' to Install Ad Blockers
"Because if the service provider is not working to protect the sanctity of the relationship between reader and publisher, you have not just a right but a duty to take every effort to protect yourself in response" (via Mashable and The Intercept).
T-Mobile Offering Is "Highly Innovative," FCC Chief Wheeler Says
+ Comcast Launches Streaming TV Service That Doesn't Count Against Data Caps (via Ars Technica).
Traditional Holiday Commercials Are Moving Online -- Away From TV
This year, for the first time ever, Hallmark said it would spend nothing on holiday TV ads, instead going all-digital (via Washington Post).
AOL Survey: Most Brands are Bringing Programmatic Video Buying In-House
The vast majority of brands plan to bring their programmatic video trading in-house, if they haven't already, an AOL report on the state of the European video marketplace revealed (via Digiday).
Ad Industry Accounted for 19 Percent of U.S. GDP in 2014
Advertising contributed $3.4 trillion to the U.S. GDP last year finds study commissioned by Association of National Advertisers and The Advertising Coalition (via AdWeek).
+ Ad Economy Strong Ahead of Holiday Season and New Year (press release).
Mindshare Explores What it Means to be Human, a Robot ... and Dead
Huddle conference in London explores convergence of technology and humanity, including whether the brains of those creating the ads different from the people they're meant for (via Digiday).
People on the Move
Univision has promoted Isaac Lee to the newly-created position of Chief News and Digital Officer in which he will continue to oversee the company's news and digital divisions and is charged with developing an integrated music strategy involving Univision's live events and radio programming (via Deadline).
Accounts on the Move
Unilever Retains Mindshare in Western Europe and US After Global Media Review
Nielsen Girds for Total Audience Measurement in 2016
One of Nielsen's biggest goals for 2016 will be to introduce its multiplatform measurement tool tracking "total content ratings" (via BeetTV).
Hearst CEO: We Continue to Believe in the Media Business
Steven Swartz, Hearst's chief executive officer, discusses the company's diversification strategy and media business (via Bloomberg).
Latest "South Park" Episode: Sponsored Content
"I felt that the ads were evolving somehow. They started knowing what I liked, what I was afraid of. I tried ad blockers but it seemed like every time I tried to block the ads they just got smarter." (via South Park Studios and Mashable ).
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