Women’s Media Center Report: Representation of Women in Media Has Stagnated
In a report entitled ”The Status of Women in the U.S. Media, 2013“, the Women’s Media Center reported that the percentage of women working in newspaper newsrooms was 36.9 in 2012–exactly the same proportion reported in 1999. The report also found that if current hiring trends continue at their current pace, women will not reach parity with men in leadership roles until 2085. Male bylines outnumber those of their female counterparts by a 3 to 1 margin.
Columbia University: Online Courses May Harm Minority Students
Columbia released a large-scale report based on a survey of 40,000 community and technical college students suggesting students of color actually fare worse when they take courses online in lieu of a traditional classroom setting. Among the report’s findings, taking a course online correlated with a 0.15-0.4 grade reduction based on a 4.0 scale. However, the study did not control for the quality of on-line programs and contradicts another large-scale study conducted by the U.S. Department of Education showing a favorable impact of on-line learning on student outcomes.
Georgetown University: Associates STEM Degree-holders Earn More than Some Bachelor’s Degree Holders
Community college graduates with STEM degrees out earn non-STEM bachelor’s degree holders, according to the Georgetown University report. However, a 2009 Education Trust Baseline Report showed a community college completion gap of 9 percentage points between minority students (24%) and all students (33%).
Equity and Excellence Commission Submits Report to Department of Education
The report advises the Secretary of Education on strategies for reducing barriers to meaningful educational opportunities. The report outlines a five-part framework focusing on equitable school finance; effective teachers, principals and curricula; early childhood education; mitigating poverty’s effects, and; accountability and governance.
Robin Roberts’ Return to ABC’s Good Morning America Yielded 6.1 Million Viewers
The anchor, who recently underwent a bone marrow transplant, returned to GMA on February 20. Nielsen reported Ms. Roberts’ return to the network resulted in GMA‘s largest audience since November 7, the day after the Presidential election.
The Federal Communications Commission released a white paper reviewing how the United States compares to other nations as it frees spectrum to accomodate what Cisco has estimated to be an expected eighteen-fold increase in spectrum demand between 2011 and 2016. Much of the report focuses on licensed spectrum frequency bands below 2.7 GHz as they comprise the predominant frequencies used to provide mobile broadband services around the world. The U.S. ranks first among the nations it studied in current and pipeline (including pipeline unlicensed) spectrum, with 958 MHz. Australia ranks second with 708 MHz of current and pipeline spectrum. Brazil, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and the U.K. were also studied.
The Wireless Broadband Alliance reported that operators attribute 75 percent of their mobile traffic to users accessing personal routers, indicating a preference for using Wi-Fi at home.
Online video viewing was down slightly in December, 2012. Viewers in the UK watch the most TV shows on their tablets. Sixty-six percent of U.S. consumers stream any kind of video two to three times per week.
GSMA: The total number of mobile connections will soar to 7.4 billion this year, exceeding the world population by 300 million.
China announced plans to extend 4M broadband coverage to 70% of the country’s internet users.
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) reported the U.S. stands in 14th place worldwide in the number of people with high speed broadband connections.
GSMA: Mobile health could save developed countries $400 billion in 2017 by improving care for sudden health incidents, remote patient monitoring, mobile access to electronic health records, and implementing SMS messaging for appointment and medication reminders.
IFPI: Spurred by Digital Downloading, Global Recorded Music Revenues Grew for the First Time Since 1999
The University of Texas at Austin has released a data tool enabling policymakers to track emerging conflicts in Africa.
T-Mobile has continued to lose contract customers, but the losses have been offset by an increase in prepaid customers.
A petition on the White House website asking the U.S. government to permit mobile phones to be “unlocked” (i.e. registered to a different carrier than the one to which the phone was configured at the time of purchase) reached the threshold of 100,000 signatures required to receive consideration.
Sprint saved $1 billion via its phone refurbishment program.
The four mainstream television networks are recording a historic decline in ratings, down 23 percent compared to the same week last year.
Nielsen: Many advertisers fail to target women in shows, such as Walking Dead, that deliver a high number of female viewers but contain themes not traditionally considered appealing to women.
The USA Network had the highest ratings among cable networks in February, with AMC’s Walking Dead episodes occupying the top 3 shows for the month.
IAB: Even though shoppers use their smartphones while shopping, 38% actually end up purchasing their items in-store.
Education professionals report lack of funding as the main impediment to widespread implementation of educational technology in the classroom.
A JD Power survey found nearly one-third (29%) of customers affected by Hurricane Sandy learned about power outages by listening to the radio. Thirty-seven percent learned of power outages by calling their phone company. Seventeen percent learned by visiting their power company’s website.
Sixty-eight percent of marketers reported they will increase spending on big data initiatives. Forty-nine percent of respondents cited website analytics data as the best source of consumer information.
Sinclair Broadcasting will acquire five Cox TV stations.
Nielsen: With 40.3 million viewers, the Oscars returned its best audience in 3 years.
Consumer satisfaction with online travel companies has dropped by 2.6 percent–to 76 percent–putting the industry behind other e-commerce retailers. Amazon still leads among all e-commerce retailers irrespective of industry.
Report: STEM jobs are up 15% in Florida
Akamai: The U.S. Ranks 9th in Average Internet Speed, 12th in High Speed Internet Adoption
According to Akamai, the average internet speed in the United States was 7.2 average Mbps. While this was substantially higher than the global average of 2.8 Mbps, the U.S. trailed South Korea (14.7), Japan (10.5), Hong Kong (9.0), Switzerland (8.7), LaTVia (8.7), Netherlands (8.5), Czech Republic (7.6), and Denmark (7.2) in the third quarter of 2012. Earlier this month, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski challenged American cities to build 1 gigabit of high speed internet service to at least one city in all fifty states by 2015.
Venture Capitalists Invested $907 Million in the mHealth Sector in 2012
Mobile Health Market News reports $907 Million in growth of VC investments made in mobile health technologies in 2012. African-Americans and Latinos suffer disproportionately from chronic disease and their high usage of smart phones and other mobile devices is an opportunity to help patients monitor their health and fitness and communicate with health care professionals. The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (NCHIT) is expected to announce the winner of a mobile health contest it is sponsoring in which the winning designer of an app for managing cardiovascular disease will receive $100,000. NCHIT is also sponsoring an app development contest to develop a tool to engage and empower women in underserved and minority communities to improve the prevention and treatment of cancer.
Just 43% of Cable Subscribers Have Reported Using ‘TV Everywhere’
“TV Everywhere” is the term referring to the distribution of television beyond the fixed television set to wireless devices and apps. GfK media research reported lackluster use of TV Everywhere apps among cable subscribers. However, highlighting the market for TV Everywhere among African-Americans, Nielsen reported last year a 54% penetration rate of smartphones among African Americans and that African Americans download and view video via their mobile devices at a rate 30% higher than the general population. In December, Univision announced efforts to expand its TV Everywhere initiatives citing a 70% smartphone penetration rate among Hispanics, compared to 54% of non-Hispanics, with 41% using their phones to stream video, compared to 28% of subscribers overall.
IHS: Consumers Spent $62.4 Billion Watching Movies in 2012
According to IHS Screen Digest, consumer spending on movies rose by $1.3 billion in 2012 to $62.4 billion compared to $61.1 billion in 2011 and $60.1 billion in 2010. According to BET Networks in a study released in 2011, African-Americans go to the movies an average of 13.4 times per year compared to 11 times per year overall. Also according to the BET report, 62% of African-Americans watch the same movie multiple times across all platforms.
‘Gangnam Style’ Star Psy Earned $8 Million from You Tube in Strong Google Fourth Quarter
Google reported a strong fourth quarter with 36% growth over the same quarter in 2011 and 8% growth over the previous quarter—the third quarter—in 2012. K-pop star Psy earned $8 million in You Tube ad revenue for his “Gangnam Style” video. The Washington Post reported last year that a disproportionate share of popular You Tube personalities are people of color.
Google released new data for its Transparency Report showing a 10% uptick in the number of government requests for the company’s user data. Sixty-eight percent of such requests were made via subpoenas. Another 22% were made via Electronic Communications Privacy Act (“ECPA”) search warrants. Ten percent were ECPA court orders and other requests that were difficult to classify.
Nielsen released a report showing global ad spending was strong in the first nine months of 2012, with TV advertising continuing to dominate the share of advertising dollars, with a 61.8% share. Ad spending on TV grew by 4.3%, compared to 3.3% overall between January and September of last year. The Olympics and political advertising drove double-digit TV ad spending growth of 13.6% in North America.
Despite hefty returns in 4Q12, Apple’s stock price dropped 11% last week.
Nielsen estimates show Oprah’s Lance Armstrong interview was seen by 28 million worldwide.
According to Pandora, the internet radio service users customize, it streamed 13 billion hours of content, in 2012. The company also reported it paid $182.1 million in royalties, or 60 percent of its revenue, through October of 2012.
Most marketers are mystified when it comes to how to implement big data as part of their marketing strategies, according to the Direct Marketing Association. Some 81% of marketers reported they do not know enough about relevant policies and regulations to implement effective big data strategies.
Akamai reported one third of cyber attacks originate in China.
The NPD Group reports 40% of televisions connected to the internet stream video using Netflix.
Aggregate Knowledge reported advertising campaigns including Facebook advertising boosted sales by 24%.
The Joint Center blog is starting a weekly feature called Media and Technology Stats & Studies. In this feature, the Media and Technology Institute team will assemble short summaries of research studies that we think our readers will find interesting. For the most part, we’ll view these studies through the lens of how they impact people of color. Sometimes, we may share something in the media, technology, or telecom fields that we think is just too interesting not to pass on. We hope readers find this useful.
Stats & Studies – 01/11/13
Investments in Digital Health Technologies Rose 45 Percent in 2012
In its year-end funding report, San Francisco-based Rock Health showed health IT investments of $1.4 billion in 2012, up 11 percent over 2011. Health technologies like mobile health tools for doctors and patients, personal health tracking applications, and technology to improve hospital administration are of particular relevance for people of color who continue to suffer disproportionately from chronic illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and lower respiratory illnesses. The Joint Center’s 2012 report on mobile health technology is available here.
Weill Cornell Medical College: Technical Support in the Use of Electronic Health Records May Improve Underserved Patient Care
A Weill Cornell Medical College study reported that primary care physicians in underserved areas in New York City who received technical assistance with electronic health records were more likely to improve their quality of care than physicians who did not receive such assistance.
Consumer Electronics Association Predicts Explosive Growth in Spending on Consumer Gadgets
The Consumer Electronics Association reports it expects spending on consumer gadgets to soar by 4% over 2012, to $1.1 trillion in 2013. This outlook was somewhat dampened by concerns about how the recent “fiscal cliff” tax changes, specifically the end of the tax holiday and increased taxes on the wealthy, will affect consumer spending. The report did not address how continued high unemployment among African-Americans and Latinos will affect their purchasing decisions, even though African-Americans and Latinos are among the most avid users of at least one type consumer device—smartphones. CES concluded most of the growth would occur in emerging markets. Apple also battled rumors earlier this week that it is developing a cheaper iPhone.
Nielsen Reports TV Still Leads as Number One Media Consumption Platform
Nielsen reported that only 16 percent of American homes have tablets and that Americans spend 6 days per month watching traditional television. Following traditional television viewing, viewing content via the Internet using computers was the distant second most popular platform with Americans spending 28 hours, 29 minutes consuming content online. Time-shifted TV came in third, with the average viewer spending 11 hours, 33 minutes using their DVRs. Previously, Nielsen reported that African-Americans spend more time watching television than any other racial group, at 7 hours, 12 minutes per day, compared to an average 5 hours, 11 minutes for TV viewers overall. Other reports have shown that African-American children spend more time with the television on in the background than other groups (5.5 hours per day, compared to 4 hours for the overall population). However, the American Academy of Pediatrics has found background TV viewing to be harmful to children’s development.
Sixty percent of qualified homes in Kansas City are interested in Google’s IPTV + broadband service.
Ninety percent of pay TV customers can get TV Everywhere.
The ad platform Kenshoo reports advertisers spend 20% of their Facebook budgets on mobile, up from 14% in October, 2012.
IDC projects 31.7% annual growth in multibillion dollar big data industry through 2016.
Verizon: Almost 50% of its data traffic now goes over LTE.
Babson Survey Research: 6.7 million students are now taking at least one course online.
by Jermane Bond, Ph.D.
In February, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), through its accelerated approval regulations, approved and granted exclusivity to KV Pharmaceuticals to market Makena (17Alpha Hydroxyprogesterone Caproate). The drug is also known as 17P, a synthetic hormone delivered by weekly intramuscular injection to slow the progression of pre-term birth (PTB) before 37 weeks of pregnancy, among pregnant women with at least one previous spontaneous PTB. Although the drug is not for use for women with other risk factors for PTB or women pregnant with twins, it has been sold for years without approval. Today, the drug just comes with a large price tag.
PTB is one of the leading causes of neonatal mortality in the United States. Major risk factors for PTB include behavioral and demographic characteristics such as race/ethnicity, maternal age, history of preterm delivery, stress, income, education, employment, housing, prenatal care utilization, smoking, alcohol consumption and marital status. Already, the preterm birth rate is roughly 13 percent of live births, accounting for 500,000 infant deaths annually.
On March 14, 2011 the new 17P, Makena was officially brought to market, marking the first FDA approval of a drug for the prevention of PTB. Subsequently, the prescription cost increased from $20 to $1500 per dose. Recent studies support the use of progesterone supplementation for patients at risk for PTB. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has promoted the use of 17P injections since 2003, following two successful randomized placebo-controlled trials. Research has shown that approximately one-third of pregnant women receiving weekly 17P injections have had successful outcomes resulting in the prevention of PTB. And in 2008, ACOG issued a Committee Opinion indicating that progesterone for the prevention of PTB should be offered to women with a history of spontaneous PTB.
Some obstetricians, maternal health and public health practitioners, including family planning advocates, are outraged at the dosage price increase for 17P and have spoken out and written letters to KV. As a result, the St. Louis drug company has been criticized for increasing the price of Makena. In April, the company announced that it would cut the price by more than half (in fact KV reduced the dosage price to $690 two days after the FDA publicly invited competition by announcing that it would continue to allow compounding pharmacies to make and sell a generic version of the drug). Now, instead of a pregnancy costing $30,000, a much improved price of $13,800 will make the drug more accessible.
Jermane Bond, Ph.D. is Research Associate in the Health Policy Institute at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies. More information on Dr. Bond and his work can be found on the Joint Center website.
by Gina E. Wood and Leslie L. Simmons
Coal and oil-fired power plants release mercury, arsenic, other metals, acid gases, and particulates – all of which can harm people’s health. These pollutants are linked to cancer, IQ loss, heart disease, lung disease and premature death.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has taken steps to dramatically improve public health, the climate, and even the economy by proposing the Mercury and Utility Air Toxics Standards (Utility Air Toxics Rule). The proposed standards will reduce emissions of mercury, other toxic metals, hydrogen chloride and other acid gases, and organic air toxins like dioxin and furans – known human carcinogens. These standards are long overdue, and represent the first time that the EPA is requiring coal and oil-fired power plants to control their emissions of toxic air pollutants.
Recently, some opponents of the rule have gone so far as to claim that African Americans will be disproportionately impacted by its costs. These claims are unsubstantiated and fly in the face of what we know: that African Americans and other people of color are disproportionately harmed by air pollution where they live. None of the studies used to support claim of adverse economic impacts on African Americans actually evaluate the impacts of EPA’s regulations or policies, much less this specific regulation. Moreover, the statements of the groups opposing the EPA regulations fail to acknowledge the well-documented disproportionate impacts of dirty air and greenhouse gases on people of color. EPA has conducted analyses for all of the greenhouse gas and clean air regulations it has promulgated, and its analyses demonstrate that the economic impacts are minimal.
The New Rule Will Reduce Toxic Air Pollution and Save Lives
Per the EPA’s Regulatory Impact Analysis, the proposed “Utility Air Toxics Rule” will dramatically reduce toxic air pollution from our nation’s power plants and deliver significant benefits that will:
- Reduce the risk of mercury damage to children’s developing brains, which results in IQ loss and diminished ability to learn.
- Protect Americans from cancer and other health risks caused by other toxic air pollutants.
- Save thousands of lives each year by reducing the amount of dangerous particulates across the country. This includes neighborhoods near power plants and neighborhoods hundreds of miles away from the nearest power plant.
- Protect thousands of lakes and streams – and the fish that live there and the mammals and birds that eat them – from mercury and acid rain pollution.
- Provide employment for tens of thousands of American workers building, installing, and operating the equipment to reduce emissions of mercury, acid gases, and other toxic air pollutants.
Each year, the proposed rule would prevent serious health effects including 6,800-17,000 premature deaths, 11,000 heart attacks, 120,000 asthma attacks, and 850,000 missed work or “sick” days. Avoiding “sick days” saves companies and families money. It is particularly important for the millions of Americans whose jobs do not provide paid sick leave and who risk losing their jobs if they miss work too often. The proposed rule would also prevent 12,200 hospital admissions and emergency room visits, and 4,500 cases of chronic bronchitis each year.
While some in industry focus on the costs of this rule, any costs are far outweighed by the benefits. The value of the improvements to health alone total $59 billion to $140 billion each year. This means that for every dollar spent to reduce this pollution, society would get $5-$13 in health benefits.
The EPA will accept comments on the proposal until August 4, 2011. To learn how to submit a comment, see http://www.epa.gov/lawsregs/getinvolved.html. For more information about the Utility Air Toxics Rule, see http://www.epa.gov/ttn/atw/utility/utilitypg.html.
Source: EPA, “Reducing Toxic Pollution from Power Plants” Mar. 16, 2011.
Gina E. Wood is the Director of Policy and Planning and Deputy Director of the Health Policy Institute at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies. She also works closely with the Joint Center’s Climate Change Initiative. More information on Ms. Wood and her work can be found at the Joint Center website.
by Brian Smedley, Ph.D.
During one of the first opportunities that I had to present testimony at a Congressional hearing, a member of the committee posed a challenging question to me and other witnesses at our panel: Would you trade your current health insurance for Medicaid?
The Congressman’s intent was clear: he and others who oppose expansions of public health insurance programs believe that Medicaid is worse than private insurance, and possibly even worse than no insurance at all.
I was the first witness seated on the right of the panel, so I was to respond first. I hesitated. I didn’t want to reinforce the idea that Medicaid was deeply flawed. Sure, the program has problems, but it remains one of the most efficient health insurance programs in the country and has been a lifeline for millions of low-income and disabled Americans. But trade the insurance I had at the time? I caved and answered no. Almost all of the witnesses at our panel did the same. But I’ve regretted it since.
Yesterday a landmark new study was released that, for the first time, documents the many ways in which Medicaid improves the health and well-being of its beneficiaries. Researchers found that “expanding low-income adults’ access to Medicaid substantially increases health care use, reduces financial strain on covered individuals, and improves their self-reported health and well-being.” The study was remarkable because for the first time researchers were able to compare outcomes for people who were randomly assigned to Medicaid against those who sought Medicaid coverage but could not receive it due to budget constraints. (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/press-releases/2011-releases/medicaid-benefits-oregon-study.html)
The implications of the study are clear: efforts to slash Medicaid, such as those being debated in Congress, would increase risks for poor health and financial ruin for millions of children, elderly, and/or disabled people. These are the very folks who are struggling the most in the current economy. And given the high cost of poor health for our nation as a whole, these cuts are not only morally wrong but also put our economic recovery at risk.
Medicaid works. Let’s spread the word. I wish I had when I was given the chance to correct the record.