Paul Sweeting

Live Streaming Gets A Prosumer Twist


Broadcasters, news organizations and marketers have all begun experimenting with Meerkat and Periscope, but the reach of those efforts has been limited to people using the Meerkat and Periscope apps on particular platforms.

Meerkat last week rolled out a new, embeddable player that will expand the reach of Meerkat broadcasts, but now someone from the professional broadcasting world is looking to offer a more robust solution for distributing live broadcasts generated from mobile apps.

webstreamur_iphoneappMobile Viewpoint B.V. is a maker of wireless video and data transmission equipment for professional broadcasters that uses 3G and 4G wireless broadband links to transmit live, IP video from remote locations. At the NAB show in April, the Netherlands-based company introduced a “low cost” live streaming platform called WebStreamur aimed at small-scale and semi-pro videographers that leverages YouTube to deliver live streams via WebStreamur channels to any device from anywhere on the web.

“Since the beginning of Mobile Viewpoint we looked into the broadcast of smaller but attractive sport events on the Internet,” CEO Michel Bais said in a press release at the time. The growing popularity of watching video online via streaming platforms like YouTube, LiveStream, Meerkat and Periscope opens a marketplace for the delivery of live sports and other events that do not have the reach to get on normal Broadcast Television… WebStreamur gives the smaller content producers and sport teams easy access to a bigger audience and a global marketplace to monetize their content.”

Now, Mobile Viewpoint is going even further into the low-cost end of the market with the release of free mobile apps for iOS and Android (as well as one for Mac OS X) that leverage the YouTube-based WebStreamur platform, as well as Twitter to support real-time feedback.

“With Webstreamur you can go live at a click of a button using an iPhone. Using the tight integration with Twitter and YouTube you can go live instantly and receive feedback on your stream,” according to the somewhat awkwardly translated press release that landed in my inbox this morning.

Added Bais in a statement, “With WebStreamur’s iPhone app we are able to unleash the potential of the smaller live events that do not get airtime on national or local television channels. With the apps available for free everybody can start instantly to report live from anywhere”.

What makes the WebStreamur apps potentially interesting, apart from adding to the mobile streaming scrum, is the integration with YouTube. As I’ve suggested before, YouTube is something of the sleeping giant of the live-streaming space, late to the live gaming party and not part of the conversation around Meerkat and Periscope. But its immense scale, ubiquitous availability on connected devices and well-developed ad platform make it a potentially powerful player — or at least a powerful platform for third-party players like WebStreamur — in the live, mobile video space.

Periscope and Meerkat are tightly integrated with Twitter and Facebook. While those platforms each boast large user bases, especially Facebook, neither is a dedicated video platform as YouTube is and, until last week, neither app had reach beyond its native platforms. YouTube has a built in audience of over 1 billion unique visitors a month and its  player is easily embedded on just about every publishing platform on the web.

Nice to see someone finally making use of it for mobile streaming.



Why Linear TV Is Here to Stay and 4 Other Takeaways from ‘TV of Tomorrow’ 

For all the talk of how over-the-top streaming services and video on demand are growing, what struck me is that the majority of advertisers still prefer to invest their ad dollars in linear, and they’re confident that it’s going to remain a dominant medium. The reasons are simple: scale and simplicity. The number of people sitting down in front of a television set in their home to watch cable or broadcast still dwarfs the viewership on those other platforms. Broadcast TV will continue to be the workhorse for brands and advertisers for the foreseeable future and beyond.

Source: Guest Blog: Why Linear TV Is Here to Stay and 4 Other Takeaways from ‘TV of Tomorrow’ | Broadcasting & Cable

AT&T, DirecTv extend ‘termination date’ for second time 

AT&T Inc (T.N), the No. 2 U.S. telecom company, said it has extended the “termination date” of the merger agreement with satellite TV provider DirecTV (DTV.O) for “a short period of time”, the second time in two months. AT&T said in a regulatory filing on Monday that the extension is aimed at obtaining final regulatory approval for the merger.

Source: AT&T, DirecTv extend ‘termination date’ for second time | Reuters

Shazam Takes On Apple Music Connect With New Social Features Aimed At Musicians And Their Fans | TechCrunch

Music discovery platform Shazam is today rolling out a new feature in partnership with over two dozen artists that will allow Shazam users to see which songs their favorite musicians are listening to on the service. The news comes just ahead of Apple Music’s worldwide debut tomorrow, which will introduce streaming music, radio and other features, including a social network called Connect – a sort of Facebook for musicians that lets them share music, videos and notes with fans.

Source: Shazam Takes On Apple Music Connect With New Social Features Aimed At Musicians And Their Fans | TechCrunch

Mossberg: Apple Music Rich, Robust But Confusing

Apple has built a handsome, robust app and service that goes well beyond just offering a huge catalog of music by providing many ways to discover and group music for a very wide range of tastes and moods. But it’s also uncharacteristically complicated by Apple standards, with everything from a global terrestrial radio station to numerous suggested playlists for different purposes in different places. And the company offers very little guidance on how to navigate its many features. It will take time to learn it. And that’s not something you’re going to want to do if all you’re looking for is to lean back and listen.

Source: Apple Music: Walt Mossberg’s First Look | Re/code

AC/DC Songs Will Be Added to Streaming Services Like Apple Music 

The Australian rock stars, who began selling their music on iTunes only three years ago, will join a variety of subscription streaming music services as early as Tuesday, including Spotify, Rdio and Apple’s new service, Apple Music, according to a number of people with knowledge of the band’s plans who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Source: AC/DC Songs Will Be Added to Streaming Services Like Apple Music – The New York Times

AOL in Deal With Microsoft to Take Over Display Ad Business 

Under the agreement, AOL will take over management and sales of display, mobile and video advertising that appears on Xbox, Skype and other Microsoft products in the United States, Canada, Japan, Brazil and five European countries. The move takes Microsoft largely out of the display ad business while giving AOL access to some of the web’s most popular destinations.

Source: AOL in Deal With Microsoft to Take Over Display Ad Business – The New York Times

Meerkat Outs An Embeddable Player

Livestreaming app Meerkat has launched an embeddable player so that content being broadcast to the app can be embedded into and viewed on other digital services. The first implementation of the player is with the Discovery Channel, for its annual Shark Week multi-platform event — which begins July 5.

Source: Meerkat Outs An Embeddable Player, Hooks Discovery Channel’s Shark Week | TechCrunch

2016’s campaign technology takes online tracking to new level 

Now, companies such as San Francisco-based Zignal Labs can mine data streams in real time from Twitter, Facebook, social video sites like YouTube and Vimeo, a few hundred thousand online news outlets and millions of blogs and transcripts. The data stream is then funneled into a single, instant information feed. When a candidate gives a stump speech or news breaks out, the new technology will almost instantaneously pinpoint how it’s playing across the media and social media spectrum.

Source: 2016’s campaign technology takes online tracking to new level –

Record Giants Win $210M Settlement from SiriusXM Over Pre-1972 Music 

The Recording Industry Association of America has announced that SiriusXM will be paying for the use of sound recordings created before 1972. A $210 million settlement with ABKCO Music & Records, Capitol Records, Sony Music Entertainment, UMG Recordings and Warner Music Group resolves a lawsuit filed over the satellite radio giant’s performance and reproduction of older songs.

Source: Record Giants Win $210M Settlement from SiriusXM Over Pre-1972 Music – The Hollywood Reporter

Nowhere To Go But Up For Retrans Fees 

According to the latest research from SNL Kagan, TV station groups with network O&Os or affiliates are averaging more than $1 per pay-TV subscriber per month in retransmission consent fees. Sinclair, for instance, is getting $1.39; Tegna (formerly Gannett), $1.30; and CBS, $1.22.But those fees could go much higher, said a couple of speakers at the SNL Kagan TV and Radio Finance Summit Thursday in New York. Randy Bongarten, CEO of Bonten Media Group, said he sees a day in the not-too-distant future when cable and satellite broadcasters pay “$4, $5, $6″ for the privilege of carrying broadcast signals.

Source: Nowhere To Go But Up For Retrans Fees |

As Viewers Migrate To Mobile, Data Helps ESPN Gauge ‘Total Audience’

ESPN hired its first global data officer last week, The Weather Company’s Vikram Somaya, to evaluate ways data can improve content development and marketing effectiveness.Besides data, the word “automation” is increasingly entering sales conversations – ESPN last winter experimented with its first programmatic auction on select “SportsCenter” inventory.

Source: As Viewers Migrate To Mobile, Data Helps ESPN Gauge ‘Total Audience’