Media and Technology Stats and Studies – February 8, 2013

FCC Proposes Nationwide, Super WiFi Networks

The Washington Post reported the FCC has proposed the creation of super WiFi networks across the nation using broadcast spectrum. The announcement sparked intense lobbying by telecommunications companies arguing auctioning the airwaves proposed for super WiFi would raise billions for the U.S. Treasury and the extent of interference the networks would cause ought to be thoroughly investigated. Technology companies like Google and Microsoft have argued such Super WiFi networks would spur innovation and reduce the cost of wireless for the poor.  In remarks presented at the FCC on Thursday, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies Media and Technology Institute VP and Director John Horrigan noted cost is the most cited reason (36%) among those who have not adopted broadband. However, wireless broadband is not panacea for closing the broadband adoption gap, Dr. Horrigan said.

Cisco: Mobile Use Will Surge Over the Next Five Years

Cisco anticipates mobile internet use will surge by 66 percent per year over the next 5 years. If history is any guide, the rate will be even higher for people of color.  The Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies has reported 50 percent of black users use mobile devices to access the Internet, compared to 30 percent of whites.

Girls Fare Worse in Science in Western Nations than Eastern Ones

In a science test given in 65 countries by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), girls outperformed boys in more countries.  In the United States, however, boys outscored girls by a rate of 2.7 percent.

FCC Releases Annual Performance Report           

The FCC released its annual performance report detailing its progress in fulfilling its strategic goals and performance commitments. The Commission’s accomplishments having the most direct impact on underrepresented Americans include reforms to the Universal Service Fund, including the launch of the Connect America Fund and Mobility Fund; overhauling Lifeline Linkup; implementation of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010, and; enhancing the ability of Tribal Nations to own broadcast facilities.

The Atlantic: Less Dense Mapping Data for Less Cosmopolitan Areas May Exacerbate Real-Word Inequality

The Atlantic Monthly reported on the effect lack of mapping data has on the knowledge base used for addressing real-world inequality.  For example, most Tweets during hurricane Sandy came from areas in New York least affected by the storm. The article also suggests online searches for the same information, such as “restaurant”, but searched for in different languages, lead to different results, thus “making people experience fundamentally different cities.”

Other Reports:

Nielsen reported Super Bowl XLVII broke ratings records in metered markets with a 52.9 rating/75 share overall, with the highest rating/share in Baltimore (59.6/83). Still, the game’s cumulative audience of 108.4 million viewers did not surpass last year’s record Super Bowl audience of 111.3 million. And broadcast industry consulting form SNL Kagan estimated CBS may have lost more money spending on production costs and license fees than the $240 million it generated in ad revenue.  Interestingly, San Francisco did not rate among the top ten metered markets.  Twitter recorded 24.1 million Super Bowl game tweets.

Dell, Inc. will go private in a $24 billion deal.  Microsoft will loan the company $2 billion.

U.S.-based Liberty Global will acquire British cable company Virgin Media for $16 billion. The deal comes amid declining advertising revenues throughout Europe and Americans playing an increasing role in media industries there.

Sixty-one percent of Facebook users have taken a break from the site, according to the Pew Research Center.  Taking a break from Facebook appears more likely to maintain friendships than unfriending  someone, according to a University of Colorado at Boulder study, which showed 40% of people who have been unfriended on Facebook will avoid the person who unfriended them in real life.

Disney’s lagging movie and TV divisions caused its profits to slide 6% in 4Q12. Increased programming costs at ESPN for football and basketball, as well as a 43% drop in operating income of its Disney Studios unit are among several factors blamed for the decline.  Disney’s theme park returns were strong, though, with operating income up 4% to $577 million.

Reuters: AOL’s revenue rose for the first time in 8 years.

Kapersky Lab reported a child watching videos on YouTube is an average of just 3 clicks away from disturbing, adult content.

Ad agencies predict digital ad spending may eclipse traditional ad spending in as few as 3 years.

Millenial Media reported 64 percent of gaming ad impressions came from Android devices

eMarketer: 92.5 million people used digital coupons in 2012.

Foote Partners reported tech jobs accounted for up to 14% of January hiring.

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