Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 22 January 2019

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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Scala Radio
Scala Radio (Image Credit: Bauer Media)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

Simon Mayo Joins Scala Radio

Simon Mayo ended a decades long career at the BBC last year, after some clumsy ham-fisted people management by the corporation.

For some time, Simon has been teasing his future plans. These have now been revealed. Bauer Media, which also owns brands such as Absolute Radio and KISS, will be launching a classical music and entertainment station on Monday 4 March 2019. It’s called Scala Radio, with the streamline “Classical Music For Modern Life.”

Other presenters include Angellica Bell, Goldie, Chris Rogers, Charles Nove, Mark Forrest, Mark Kermode, Sam Hughes, Jamie Crick and William Orbit.

One small technical point: BBC Radio 3 and Classic FM have higher bit-rates in stereo on DAB digital radio to preserve audio quality, whereas commercial radio groups happily compress their music stations into low bit-rate mono to squeeze in more stations. This station will need to have a high sound quality to compete.

Also of note this week:

The Controller of BBC Radio 4, a station with one of the most resistant to change audiences, Gwyneth Williams is to leave the corporation. (BBC)

In a sign of the pressures on online news websites, Janine Gibson, Editor In Chief of Buzzfeed UK, is to leave the website.

Beyond the Barbed Wire – Cyber Security in the UK (BBC Radio 4)

Facebook continues to play Whack-A-Mole with malicious Russian actors. (Facebook)

On a similar note, an extract in TIME from the book “Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe” by Roger McNamee. (TIME)

The Financial Times takes lunch with Meg Whitman, now CEO of short-form mobile video platform Quibi. One pertinent comment for Facebook, Google et al is how when at eBay it made a conscious decision not to allow listings for certain products, even when legally permissible. (Financial Times)

Google is to buy Fossil’s smartwatch business. (Fossil)

Heathrow launches Heathrow Sound Escapes. (Heathrow)

The Huffington Post interviews Twitter co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey. (Huffington Post)

Netflix now has a 10% TV audience share in the US. What happens in the US will happen here in a few years’ time. (Recode)

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 GMT. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 15 January 2019

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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BBC New Broadcasting House, London
BBC New Broadcasting House, London

Hello and welcome to our first weekly travel media and technology bulletin of 2019, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

January is a busy month for UK radio.

Yesterday, Zoe Ball, Sara Cox, Jo Whiley and Trevor Nelson started new weekday shows on BBC Radio 2.

Last week, Lauren Laverne, Mary Anne-Hobbs and Shaun Keaveny started new shows on BBC 6 Music.

Most anticipated all is the return of Chris Evans to Virgin Radio, next Monday. In an illustration of how disjointed Virgin’s brand licensing can be, Virgin Radio (owned by News Corp UK) has secured sponsorship from Sky, an arch rival to Virgin Media (owned by Liberty Global). No doubt to placate drifting Radio 2 listeners, the show will initially be free of advertisements. Chris will inevitably benefit from cross-promotion in News Corp newspapers, but he joins a station with relatively limited distribution and a spartan schedule compared to Radio 2.

Also of note this week:

The personal life of Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, the richest man in the world, is his business. However, the prospect of his 16.3% stake in Amazon being diluted due his impending divorce could radically change the direction of the company. (The Atlantic)

The Australian Open, which started yesterday, has a daily podcast. The first edition inevitably focuses on Andy Murray. (Australian Open)

The BBC begins consulting on extending the catch-up window of content on the iPlayer. This is likely to presage further closures of linear TV channels, partly due to the BBC having to make further cuts. (BBC)

Facebook has introduced a new podcast “Three and a Half Degrees: The Power of Connection”. (Facebook)

Norwegian is introduce WiFi on its long-haul aircraft, with a free basic option. (Norwegian)

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 GMT. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 11 December 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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“Santa’s Little Helpers” by John Cuneo for The New Yorker

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

This is our last bulletin for 2018. It will return on Tuesday 15 January 2019.

Spotify’s 2018 Wrapped

Unless you’ve been on a social media blackout over the past week, you couldn’t have failed to notice Spotify’s 2018 wrapped.

With services like Spotify there’s a fine line between using data effectively to create personalised experiences and giving customers the impression they’re just one entry in a massive database to be mined for someone else’s benefit.

Spotify stays on the right side of the line. Check out your most played artists, songs and genres at Spotify 2018 Wrapped.

BBC iPlayer Boxsets

In preparation for the Christmas holidays, the BBC has added over 100 TV drama, comedy and documentary “box sets” to the BBC iPlayer. (BBC)

Box sets of audio podcasts and mixes will also be available on the BBC Sounds app. (BBC)

Continue reading “Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 11 December 2018”

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 4 December 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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British Airways WiFi
(Image Credit: British Airways)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

Warner Media to launch US Streaming Service

WarnerMedia, which owns properties such as Warner Bros, HBO, and is in turn owned by AT&T, has outlined its plans to launch a streaming service in the US in the fourth quarter of 2019.

It will have three tiers. The first entry level package will be focused on films. A second tier package will offer films and original programming. A third bundle will offer all of these and archive programming.

The significance of this is that as Warner Bros owns content such as Friends, this is likely to be removed from Netflix in the coming years. Like Disney’s own forthcoming streaming service, expect it to launch in the UK at some point.

On the subject of Netflix. This is from Saturday Night Live:

“Our goal is the endless scroll; by the the time you’ve reached the bottom of our menu, there are new shows at the top and thus the singularity will be achieved.”

Also of note this week:

Amazon opens a new 4 Star store on Spring Street in SoHo and The New York Times is not impressed: “joyless, arbitrary, spiritually empty”. Amazon is a ruthlessly efficient business but, as per its website and devices, elegance is not its forte. (New York Times)

Apple Music will soon be available on Amazon Alexa devices. (Amazon)

Magic FM is doing its bit for Mariah Carey and Tony Mortimer’s Christmas royalty cheques: Non-stop Christmas songs all day.

The New York Times’ Ten 10 Best Books Of 2018. (New York Times)

100,000 people in the UK suffer from a stroke every year. Broadcaster Mark Goodier, who had a series of strokes in 2016 and 2017, hosts a podcast “Stroke Stories” which speaks with survivors of strokes who share their recovery stories. (Stroke Stories)

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 GMT. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 27 November 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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Google Pixel Curiosity Rooms
Google Pixel Curiosity Rooms (Image Credit: Google)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

Google Curiosity Rooms At Regent Street

Google has opened its “Curiosity Rooms” at 55 Regent Street, London.

The venue is open from Thursdays to Sundays until Sunday 16 December 2018. Unfortunately all the talks are sold out. However, there is still plenty see.

Set across three floors and inspired by the Google Pixel 3 phone it includes features such as Top Shot, Group Selfie Cam and Google Lens.

Also of note this week:

BBC Radio 1 poaches Rickie, Melvin and Charlie from KISS FM. (BBC)

b8ta showcases its products in Virgin Atlantic’s New York JFK Clubhouse. (Virgin Atlantic)

Financial Times Editor Lionel Barber on the future of financial journalism. (Financial Times)

What happens in the US soon happens in the UK: Viewers turn away from network TV in favour of streaming services. (The New York Times)

Time magazine lists the Top 10 podcasts of 2018. (Time)

Is British Vogue Editor Edward Enninful the next Anna Wintour? (The Washington Post)

The Washington Post launches its new daily podcast “Post Reports” published every weekday 17:00 EST from Monday 3 December 2018. (The Washington Post)

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 GMT. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 20 November 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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Two contrasting Wired Magazine covers on Facebook
Two contrasting Wired Magazine covers on Facebook (Image Credit: Wired)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

Facebook Under Fire (Again)

Trouble at Menlo Park.

An extensive investigation by the New York Times, based on interviews with many current and former employees, has found Facebook adopted a strategy of “Delay, Deny and Deflect” when faced with evidence of misuse of its platform by Russian intelligence agents during the 2016 US Presidential Election.

It also hired a Washington based PR firm Definers Public Affairs to seed opposition research on Facebook’s critics – which both Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg deny any knowledge of.

The New York Times investigation drew an equally defensive response from the company, threatening to sack employees who speak to the press.

Bloomberg reports that continued questions over the company’s strategy has had a bruising impact on internal morale.

Meanwhile, Apple CEO Tim Cook has conceded that regulation of the technology sector is inevitable.

On a related note, investigative journalists Carole Cadwalladr and Peter Jukes have launched a new podcast Dial M for Mueller on why the UK hasn’t followed the US in investigating interference by malicious actors in democratic processes.

Continue reading “Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 20 November 2018”

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 13 November 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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Uncover Bomb On Board
Uncover Bomb On Board (Image Credit: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

CBC’s “Uncover” Investigates Canadian Pacific Flight 21

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s “Uncover” podcast investigates the unsolved mystery of Canadian Pacific Flight 21.

On 8 July 1965, a bomb exploded on board Canadian Pacific Air Lines Flight 21 which was bound from Vancouver, via a number of stops, to Whitehorse, Yukon.

The DC6-B aircraft crashed in Cariboo country, 170 miles north east of Vancouver. All 52 people on board the aircraft died, including 6 crew members and 46 passengers.

No one has ever claimed responsibility and whilst four suspects were identified, no charges have ever been made. It remains one of the greatest unsolved mass murders on Canadian soil.

The first two episodes are available online now. (CBC)

Disney Plans Its Own Streaming Service Disney+

Disney has confirmed it is to launch a new streaming service, Disney+

Disney+ will first launch in the US late next year.

Disney, which recently acquired most of Fox in the US but lost out on Sky in Europe to Comcast, is expected to add newly commissioned series and archive films and series from Disney, Pixar, Marvel Studios, Star Wars and National Geographic. It is also expected to withdraw much, if not all, of its content from Netflix. There’s no confirmed launch date for Disney+ in Europe. This may well coincide with the withdrawal of Disney’s content from Sky.

Disney has also hinted that US based streaming service Hulu, which is 60% owned by Disney, may also launch internationally.

If that’s not enough, WarnerMedia which owns Warner Bros and HBO also plans to launch its own streaming service by the end of next year. There has long been talk of the BBC, Channel 4 and ITV launching their own streaming service to rival Netflix, but nothing has come of it.
Continue reading “Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 13 November 2018”

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 6 November 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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The BBC Sounds App
The BBC Sounds App (Image Credit: BBC)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

BBC launches BBC Sounds

The BBC has officially launched its new audio app BBC Sounds.

BBC Sounds is intended to ultimately replace its iPlayer radio app and brings the BBC’s live radio stations, on-demand audio and podcasts into one app.

You may have seen BBC Radio services have rebranded their social media feeds “Radio 1 on BBC Sounds”. The launch is supported by a big budget marketing campaign produced by BBC Creative with Riff Raff Films and directed by MegaForce

At the moment the app is only available for download in the UK. As you have to sign in to access the app’s content you can continue listening where you left off on other devices. To drive take-up of the app, some podcasts are only available on the app. It also features exclusive mixes and archive comedy and drama.

The Guardian launches daily news podcast

The Guardian has joined The New York Times and The Financial Times in launching a daily news podcast.

Published every weekday “Today In Focus” selects one issue for each 20 minute edition. The BBC has also launched a similar single issue daily podcast “Beyond Today”.

Continue reading “Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 6 November 2018”

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 30 October 2018

The latest developments in media and technology, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

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Good Grief, Charlie Brown! Somerset House, London
Good Grief, Charlie Brown! Somerset House, London

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin, published every Tuesday at 06:00 GMT.

Good Grief, Charlie Brown!

A new exhibition has opened at Somerset House, London celebrating the enduring legacy of the comic strip “Peanuts”.

Created by the late Charles M Schulz in 1950, the cartoon strip was syndicated to 2,600 newspapers in 75 countries around the world, and translated into 21 languages. By the time Charles M Schulz died in 2000, he had created some 17,897 comic strips – all hand drawn by himself.

The exhibition features extensive original strips from the Charles M Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa, California.

It looks not only the technical quality of his work – how he conveys emotion and sound in a black and white strip but also its enduring themes of failure, anxiety, loss and its social and political commentary.

The exhibition runs until 3 March 2019 and tickets can be bought online.

25 Years of The Essential Mix

Back in October 1993, BBC Radio 1 was at pains to shed its “Smashie and Nicey” image from the comic creations of Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse.

Big name DJs like Dave Lee Travis and Simon Bates departed the station to make way for a new guard of younger names. One of the earliest successes was “The Essential Mix”.

Created by Pete Tong, at the time the concept was revolutionary. A blank canvas for any guest DJ or producer to create a two hour uninterrupted mix, broadcast in the early hours of Sunday morning. Mixes in its early years from Daft Punk, David Holmes and Paul Oakenfold won huge plaudits. It quickly became the most taped show on BBC Radio 1.

In the early days mixes were recorded as live from vinyl onto DAT tape. And if you wanted a track listing you needed to consult one of the monthly dance music magazines. Today, the process is of course all much more sophisticated. A celebration was held at BBC Radio 1 last Friday, and features guest mixes from Derrick Carter, Derrick May, Paul Oakenfold and Slam.
Continue reading “Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 30 October 2018”

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 23 October 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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Apple 30 October 2018 Event Logos
Apple 30 October 2018 Event Logos (Image Credit: Apple)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

James Harding Launches Tortoise Media

James Harding, former Editor of The Times and Director of BBC News & Current Affairs, is launching a new “slow news” media venture Tortoise Media.

Backed by private investors and donations through Kickstarter, Tortoise Media will eschew the breaking news maelstrom. When at the BBC, James Harding was reported not to be fan of its rolling news channel, and came close to shutting it down altogether.

Tortoise Media promises not take ads nor cover press conferences. Its journalism will focus on five themes: technology; natural resources; identity; finance and longevity.

Members, depending on their choice of package, will have access to daily news conferences and receive a daily digital briefing and a quarterly print publication.

Tortoise Media has already recruited Chris Cook, policy editor at Newsnight, who broke major stories about financial mismanagement at Kids Company and alleged bullying by Speaker of the House Of Commons, John Bercow.

At the time of writing it has received donations of more than £360,000 from over 1,400 donors. There are a wide range of supporter packages available, starting at £50 for under 30s.

Apple Special Event

Apple is holding a “special event” in Brooklyn next Tuesday 30 October 2018.

It starts at 10:00 EDT. As is to be expected, details are scant at the moment. However, as Apple recently announced the launch of new iPhones at an event in Curpurtino, it is likely to focus on other Apple products. The fact that event invitations feature artistic renderings of the Apple logo, suggests it relates to creative tools such as the iPad.
Continue reading “Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 23 October 2018”