Morning Media Newsfeed: Sullivan to Quit Blogging | AT&T to Create Snapchat Series

Andrew Sullivan to quit blogging. AT&T to launch a scripted series on Snapchat. These stories and more in today's Morning Media Newsfeed

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Andrew Sullivan Says He’s Done Blogging (FishbowlDC)
Founding editor of The Dish Andrew Sullivan announced Wednesday afternoon on his blog that he has “decided to stop blogging in the near future.” Mediaite In a post simply titled “A Note to My Readers,” Sullivan explained that there were two main factors that led to his decision to give up daily blogging for nearly 15 years straight. “That’s long enough to do any single job,” he wrote. “In some ways, it’s as simple as that. There comes a time when you have to move on to new things, shake your world up, or recognize before you crash that burn-out does happen.” GigaOM It wasn’t immediately clear what Sullivan’s decision will mean for the future of the Daily Dish website, which has more than 30,000 paying subscribers contributing close to $1 million in revenue a year — a successful paywall/crowdfunding model that makes the blogger and his small team fairly unique in the new-media landscape. Capital New York On Wednesday, Sullivan announced that “the pay-meter has been disabled” and subscription auto-renewals have been “suspended.” The Dish is now in “strange, animated suspension,” he said. NYT Sullivan edited The New Republic from 1991 to 1996. Openly gay, he became known as a champion of gays in the military and same-sex marriage. A series of publications — Time magazine, The Atlantic and The Daily Beast — hosted his blog before he again struck out on his own in early 2013, charging readers for unlimited access to his site.

AT&T Launching Scripted Series on Snapchat (SocialTimes)
AT&T announced Wednesday that it’s going to launch a superhero series on Snapchat. It’ll be called SnapperHero and consist of 12 episodes that will disappear in 24 hours. Re/code It will feature YouTube celebrities like Freddie Wong and Harley Morenstein as well as Snapchat star Shaun “Shonduras” McBride. Each episode will run for a couple of minutes. THR SnapperHero, which was developed by producer Billy Parks and UTA digital media agent Kendall Ostrow in collaboration with AT&T, will source fan input to create the identities, costumes, origin stories and plotlines around its team of superheroes. Parks says that when the 12-episode series rolls out later this year, it will be tailored to its platform. Variety Launch of the series is a vote of confidence by a major advertiser in Snapchat, a photo-messaging application that allows users to send text, photos and videos to a defined set of contacts. AT&T has spent millions over the years to try to lure consumers to trying new forms of communications. Until last year, AT&T played a large role in sponsoring voting on Fox’s American Idol, a sponsorship that is believed to be instrumental in the rise of text-messaging as a mode of communication.

Facebook’s Q4 2014: Mobile Now 69 Percent of Ad Revenue (SocialTimes)
All estimates going into Q4 showed that ad spend on Facebook would rise. Facebook validated this belief Wednesday, showing that the company reaped its all-time high in quarterly ad revenue — $3.59 billion. Of that figure, 69 percent of Facebook’s ad revenue came via mobile. Adweek During the 2014 fourth quarter, Facebook did $3.6 billion in total ad sales, which was a 53 percent year-over-year increase. The booming sales were accompanied by a rising global user base that now sits at nearly 1.4 billion monthly active users, up 13 percent year-over-year. In all, Facebook took in about $12.5 billion in revenue in 2014, a 58 percent increase. THR In December, daily active users amounted to 890 million, up 18 percent compared to the same month a year ago. Mobile daily active users, though, surged 34 percent to 745 million in December. The stock rose 1 percent on Wednesday but an additional 2 percent in the after-hours session after the company’s quarterly results were announced. WSJ The 3 percent increase in daily active Facebook users last quarter was the lowest since 2012. The share of users who visit daily, which Facebook terms “engagement,” remained flat at 64 percent, the first time that ratio didn’t increase since the company went public more than two years ago. Facebook said 85 percent of its users now access the network via mobile devices, and more than a third access it exclusively via mobile.

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