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YouTube Offers ‘Sesame Street’ and Martial Arts, for a Fee (The New York Times)
YouTube on Thursday detailed its plan to let producers sell paid subscriptions to their videos, creating a prominent new marketplace for programming on the Internet. The first paid video channels appeared on the sprawling video website, a unit of Google, Thursday afternoon, with subscription rates ranging from 99 cents to $7.99 a month. Forbes Google is positioning its video site as the anti-cable TV: a video service willing to offer individual channels on the cheap rather than force people to buy huge bundles of channels, most of which they’ll never watch. Unfortunately, its subscription offerings include almost nothing you’ve ever heard of unless you’re a pretty avid of specific YouTube channels, or a kid (or have kids). VentureBeat Initially, 53 channel partners are participating in the pilot program, including Jim Henson Family TV, UFC Direct, TNA Impact Wrestling, National Geographic Kids, Rap Battle Network, SmartTV.com, TYT Plus, Recipe.tv and Acorn TV. Subscribing to all the initial channels would cost about as much as what you’d expect to pay for extended basic cable TV service. AdAge YouTube’s head of content partnerships, Malik Ducard, said creators could elect to charge subscriptions and to take advertising, but that would be the minority at the outset. “YouTube shouldn’t make the call whether a paid channel has ads or not,” he said. “The partners are smarter about their audience and their content than we are.” TechCrunch As of Thursday, users can subscribe to paid channels from their desktops and laptops and watch across devices, but going forward YouTube will look to add the ability to subscribe from any medium/device. On top of that, YouTube will begin a broader rollout of subscriptions in the next few weeks for “qualifying partners,” and from the looks of it, it will be adding a paid channel recommendation feed — just as it does now for free channels.
Facebook Updates Pages Manager for iOS (AllFacebook)
Facebook released version 2.0 of its Pages Manager for iOS application, adding features such as photo filters and stickers, but removing insights such as clicks and people talking about this, as well as other features, albeit temporarily. Sister blog Inside Facebook reported on the update, saying that the only metric available in version 2.0 is overall reach, and when users tap on that number, they are directed to a page that offers them the option of promoting their posts. Inside Facebook In related news, the social network Thursday announced an update for its Android homescreen experience Facebook Home to address performance and stability. Facebook also revealed at a press event at its headquarters that in four weeks since the launch of Home on April 12, Home increased user engagement by more than 25 percent compared to the standard Facebook app. Reuters Facebook is in advanced talks to acquire Israeli mobile satellite navigation startup Waze for $800 million to $1 billion, business daily Calcalist reported on Thursday. The deal, which would be Facebook’s largest acquisition, would give the social networking company a mapping service and allow it to better compete with Google and Apple.
The Top 100 Vines in Vine’s First 100 Days (SocialTimes)
It’s only been 100 days since Vine first appeared on Twitter, and users are already sending out five Vine videos every second. Video tech company Unruly analyzed 10 million Vines over a one-month period to understand sharing patterns, and the study found that good things come in short, repetitive packages.
Twitter Buys Scalable Computing Outfit Ubalo (AllThingsD)
Twitter announced Thursday it had acquired Ubalo, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based startup that aims to “make large-scale computing easier and more accessible to a technical audience,” according to the company’s site. It’s unclear exactly what Twitter will be doing with the company, but the team looks fairly well versed in scaling and infrastructure issues and has dabbled in Twitter topic analysis.
CheckinDJ is the Foursquare for Spotify (GigaOM)
CheckinDJ may be the cure for the bar jukebox dominated by die-hard Nickelback fans. True to its name, it’s a check-in app that uses music preferences from social network profiles to create playlists for coffee shops and other venues.
New This Year at the Chelsea Flower Show: A Tweet-Controlled Garden (AllTwitter)
Now you don’t need a green thumb to be a skilled gardener – all you need is a thumb, period. At this year’s Chelsea Flower Show, May 21-25 in London, Twitter users will be able to control the appearance of one of the display gardens.
Reddit User Fired by Google for Posting About Job (The Daily Dot)
Next time you get a new job, don’t brag about it on Reddit — especially if you’ve signed a nondisclosure agreement. Two days ago, Reddit user filthy33 learned this lesson the hard way.
The One Thing That Will Change the Business of Television (LostRemote)
There are conversations happening in the boardrooms of every TV network and MSO about the one thing that could have the most impact on television as we know it today. No, it’s not social media, 4k or DVRs – and it’s definitely not 3-D or second screen apps. It’s the one thing that gives television its lifeblood and is the backbone of its DNA: TV’s very own programming – its content.
Texas Congressman Will Arm Twitter Follower With an AR-15 (Mashable)
Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas) used his Twitter account to announce an AR-15 giveaway. He invited all interested U.S. citizens to submit their names in hopes of winning the same kind of assault weapon that was used in the Sandy Hook massacre and has since become a symbol for those opposing new gun regulations.