Have to say I agree with the conventional press wisdom that Netflix’s signing of Ryan Murphy to a massive TV and movie development deal is an inside pitch at Disney, especially when combined with its deal with Shonda Rhimes. The company clearly wants to bring some big name household brand name creators to the audience and is willing to spend to do so.

There have been stories like this before but a new study shows Netflix availability helps boost the ratings of shows on their linear networks.

Warner Bros. has launched a big rebranding push for Machinima that includes not just a new logo but a new identity campaign accompanied by some new programming.

Sorry, Playboy, but links are most definitely not copyright infringement.

No big deal, just the head of the FCC being investigated for actions he may have taken specifically to benefit Sinclair.

YouTube has added a bunch of Turner Networks content, including live sports, to YouTube TV.

More data showing Google is reclaiming its previous position as the primary driver of traffic to publisher websites from Facebook, whose percentage of referrals has fallen in the wake of all the recent changes its made to the News Feed. A big part of Google’s resurgence is the adoption by publishers of AMP, which helps mobile pages load more quickly.


Google will take it upon itself to block ads in Chrome that don’t adhere to the Better Ads Standard. That’s a huge implementation of the power Google has over the ad industry and I’d expect lots of hand-wringing and push back here from publishers who haven’t always kept the quality of the ads they display up.

As tech companies like Google and Facebook – who, remember, *totally* aren’t publishers – increase their video offerings, audiences are migrating away from television. Subsequently, advertisers are pulling dollars from TV. We’re less than two years away from the same shakeout in TV that has been unfolding in other media recently, which will be interesting to watch given the FCC’s recent decisions to loosen rules around central ownership of local stations.

“Sphere” is the name of the new product from content recommendation engine Outbrain that is meant exclusively for “premium” publishers and which will only display content from other publishers in that program.

Social Media

The obsessives out there will be happy with new features from Pinterest allowing users to archive boards (move them off a profile page), rearrange boards, rearrange pins within boards and more.

The creators of “Official Stories” on Snapchat – meaning the “influencers” that are so sought after by marketers and brands – are finally getting some substantial metrics on how their stories are performing, which means they can pass on those numbers to marketers. It’s part of Snapchat finally making some serious moves to keep people on the platform.

Vimeo has unveiled a couple new tools that position the site as a single tool for either broadcasting live (with a big caveat)or uploading videos to a variety of other platforms including YouTube, Periscope, Twitch, Facebook and more.

Turns out data from Yelp can be used to predict – or at least track – the fate of retail and dining establishments.


After honking off much of its customer base by announcing closure of a massive amount of stores, Sam’s Club is hoping to win them back (and take some business from Amazon) by offering free shipping for members ordering online.

Those closings may have been part of a more general trend away from big-box retailers and toward direct-to-consumer brands.

Facebook seems to have taken a lesson from the pharmaceuticals industry by relying largely on the findings and recommendations of researchers it funded itself to present its Facebook Kids messaging app, which is geared toward those too young for actual accounts, as totally safe.

Technology companies are always talking about the reasons why they can’t make more progress on creating a diverse and inclusive staff, but if they just set out to have their employee makeup better represent their user base it would largely solve the problem. Bonus is it would probably result in better products that take more use cases and situations into account as well.

Very interesting move by Automattic to hire someone steeped in the world of journalism as its first president for, which is what this site and Cinematic Slant are hosted on.

Want even more recommendations? Check out my Pocket Shared Items.

Chris Thilk is a freelance writer and content strategist who lives in the Chicago suburbs.