TOSHIBA is planning to retire the HD DVD format. Reuters reports that the company is in the final stages of planning its exit from the high-def disc market, handing Blu-ray the role of industry standard. The move comes just days after Wal-Mart ended support for HD DVD in favor of Blu-ray.
MTV NETWORKS has acquired BABUNGA and its collection of sites dedicated to small parenting niches. MTVN will establish an ad network that sells ad space on the sites and a handful of similar third-party parenting destinations. The initiative will be centered on the newly revamped ParentsConnect.com, an MTVN social network launched in 2006.
NEWS CORP. is trying to create a Hulu-like venture that offers content from the major music labels on MySpace. The deal calls for The Big Four to receive equity in MySpace in exchange for allowing their content to be offered free with ad-support. No label has signed on yet but talks are heating up.
ADVERTISERS are asking ABC, NBC and CBS to retire the $125 million in “integration fees” paid every year just to purchase time on their networks. The AAAA and the ANA will soon release a policy paper questioning the fees and asking the networks to defend their necessity. The paper contends that the need for the fees has been removed by advances in technology and points out that other networks (such as Fox) do not charge network integration fees.
CARAT DIGITAL is working on an ad sales platform that uses set-top box data to present on-screen targeted “bugs” to television viewers. The system is currently in testing stages, where it is being used to offer real estate services to viewers thought to be interested in buying a new home. In the future, the company will integrate purchasing data supplied by Acxiom to create a detailed picture of a household’s location, demographics, viewing habits and purchasing history.