Archive for June 2016

The New Twitter ‘140’ Rule Will Apply to Videos

This week, Twitter launched an enhanced video service that enables users to post videos that are longer than ever before- up to a full-fledged 140 seconds. The social media mogul has struggled to retain the kind of growth speeds that make stock brokers happy, and has been struggling to slow its downward inertia through platform reforms.

Twitter also announced that it would be creating a new kind of platform particularly for celebrities and public figures that enables them to share their stories easier and more effectively.

twit5Sports, news, music, and other videos are the most common kinds of material to become viral on Twitter, so the company has expanded the parameters of this content.

“Video is becoming increasingly central to the real-time conversations happening on Twitter video. Tweets on Twitter have increased by over 50 percent since the beginning of 2015,” explained Jeremy Rishel, head of product development for creators and the like.

Considering the previous time limit for videos on Twitter was 30 seconds, this 140-second change is a significant increase from the status quo. Some publishers will even be able to post videos of up to 10 minutes in length using Twitter’s professional publisher tools.

Vine, a twitter-owned video sharing service, will also be expanding the time limits of its videos. Groups of creators will be able to add videos up to 140 seconds long to their Vine, making the original 6-second Vines into trailers for their longer stories.

Vine will also add a Watch More button to the lower right corner of Vines that make it easier for viewers to follow their favorite creators, and for creators to make longer form stories by stacking multiple videos back to front.

This is all part of a greater push from Vine managers and investors to find ways to monetize the service. Vine is working alongside Twitter’s Amplify Open program and Niche, which is open to all creators.

(FILES) File photo dated September 11, 2013 shows the logo of the social networking website 'Twitter' displayed on a computer screen in London. The San Francisco company Twitter announced on September 12, 2013, in a tweet, that it has submitted papers for a stock offering, the most hotly anticipated in the tech sector since Facebook's last year. "We've confidentially submitted an S-1 to the SEC for a planned IPO. This Tweet does not constitute an offer of any securities for sale," the company tweeted. Talk of an initial public offering (IPO) has circulated about Twitter for some time, and the Wall Street Journal estimated the company founded in 2006 is worth some $10 billion. Twitter has become one of the fastest-growing and most influential social media services, used widely by celebrities, journalists, politicians and others. AFP PHOTO / LEON NEAL LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images

“In 2016, no social network can thrive without video, which has become central to both how digital users interact with online content and also how super users and brands communicate optimally with their online audiences” explained Tim Mulligan, senior analyst at Midia Research.

The press for video platforms, more freedom of expression, and more opportunities to monetize services all represent growing pains for Twitter as it struggles to compete with other tech giants.

“The real question is, what does Twitter want to be when it grows up?” pointed out Jim McGregor, principal analyst at Tirias Research. McGregor explained to a major media source that Twitter was hoping to expand its image in an effort to compete with more dominant media websites like Instagram and Facebook, both of which have more flexibility and thus more room to grow and commercialize than Twitter at the moment.

“Does [Twitter] want to be loyal to its faithful followers?” McGregor continued. “…or become an all-in-one solution that eventually moves beyond its current limits- which it continues to test?”

According to Twitter, users will learn how to share videos in three different ways; they can record, edit or share videos using the apps Twitter for iPhone and Twitter for Android OS 4.1 and higher.

Silicon Valley Debates Gawker Scandal

Last week, the digital media world just about exploded in response to the news that billionaire Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal and longtime enemy of Gawker, provided hefty financial assistance to Hulk Hogan in his defamation lawsuit against Gawker Media.

gawkerThe suit was brought to court after Gawker published a sex tape involving ex-WWE superstar “Hulk Hogan” or Terry Bollea. A Florida jury ultimately sided with Bollea to the tune of $140 million in damages.

Thiel is a board member of Facebook and has been a longtime financial supporter of the Committee to Protect Journalists. He confirmed that he provided financial backing for the Hogan case, partly due to Theil’s own concerns regarding Gawker Media’s journalism tactics.

More specifically, Gawker once existed as a site called Valleywag, which outed Thiel as gay in 2007 with a series of articles that also affected the lives of many of Thiel’s friends and family members. Thiel was a wealthy public figure at the time, but the publication of his sexual preferences provoked substantial criticism from media analysts as a violation of the man’s privacy.

As Thiel told The New York Times,┬áThiel regarded the Hogan case as an opportunity to further deter the media outlet from causing similar damage to people who lacked the financial ability to respond in a legal bid for their privacy. Theil went on to claim that the publication bullied people in an attempt to get attention despite lacking stories with any clear public interest. Accordingly, Thiel provided somewhere around $10 million to help finance Hogan’s legal case.

When Gawker lost the case, Gawker founder Nick Denton was reportedly looking to sell when the court denied the company’s motion to retry the Hogan case and the award amount was allowed to stand.

“We’ve always said we expect to prevail on appeal and we’ve always said we’re exploring contingency plans of various sorts so that’s not new,” said spokesperson Lexi Georgiadis.

hulk hogan“Everyone take a breath. We’ve had bankers engaged for quite some time given the need for contingency planning around Facebook board member Peter Thiel’s revenge campaign– and that’s how the Columbus Nova investment was arranged,” Gawker Media stated regarding its deal to sell a minority stake to Columbus Nova Technology Partners as a way to pay for the Hogan damages. “We recently engaged [Houlihan Lokey Managing Director] Mark Patricof to advise us and that seems to have stirred up some excitement, when the fact is that nothing is new.”

As to whether Thiel’s decision to help fund Hogan’s case was ethical, many are on the fence:

“It’s relatively common for the rich to sue news media just to try to get even, whether or not they have a case,” stated Rick Edmonds, media business analyst at the Poynter Institute. “This is a different twist, finding someone else with a better case and trying to damage the outlet that way. That may be dubious ethically, but I’m pretty sure it’s not illegal nor does it raise a First Amendment issue.”

Perhaps the issue raises another issue, which is that funding is the principal factor in civil cases as opposed to whether the rights of one party were infringed on by another.

3 Tech Companies Ready Soar

Today it seems that if you didn’t get in at least 6 years ago in certain tech investments then you are likely out of luck and that ship may have sailed. Luckily for you that is the sentiment that almost everyone has, so much so that it is seen a truism of the market that does not get questioned. However, this is markedly wrong, and there is still huge earning potential for burgeoning tech services and products that if you get in your portfolio now will most likely account for huge gains within the next year.

If you put on the news at any time it seems a constant circus of Facebook, Apple, and Google whose stocks are anywhere from $100-$700 a share! There are still a handful of tech companies trading for a fraction of the trace that can that pack a lot more earning for individual investments. Now, of course, these cheaper stocks are more risky and do not necisarily provide such a steady divided yield as the industry leaders would have you assume. Now these days the cheaper stocks are as always considered a more risky bet and it is really going to be feast or famine considering how they do and what to expect. But nonetheless, tech stocks that are trending between $10 a share could offer the buyer the opportunity for gains of 35%-50% even all the way up to 100%. And these days not a day goes by when there is not a stock trading below this threshold.

First up on my safe bets for 2016 is the radio streaming service SiriusXM stands alone as the top dog, or possibly the only dog in the race in the satellite radio arena. This stock has been one the the markets most substantial gainers over the last several years and has posted an earning to date of 7,820% and gain after bottoming out at 0.05 a share in early 2009.

For the year of 2015 we saw that SiriusXM reported record revenue of 4.58 billion all the way up to 9% record which was adjusted to the tune of $1.66 billion up 13% and earning of $510 million up 3%. this trading at just 24 times forward earning and given the company’s ability to scale its subscriber base and generate new revenue streams. This could spell trouble for anyone on the outside looking in, but if you can make the appropriate moves to going after such an important trend then now is the time, if you miss it now you can effectively say bye-bye to ever hoping on this money train. The reason being has to do with meteoric yet stifled growth potential. What I mean by that is there is definitely a quick buck to be made, and it will come very quickly but once it has reached it described growth potential in this quarter you can be sure that it will not continue to experience growth in this regard. Think about it as a kind of bottle rocket stock, and you gotta get in while the getting is good, and get out before it all comes crashing in on your face.