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Syndication

Welcome to the 31st episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and Rafat Ali. This week we turn across the pond to the U.K., where the BBC is pushing its BBC World cable news channel to an American audience. The BBC recently made a deal with Comcast to increase its reach to 15 million U.S. homes by the end of next year. We talked to BBC World honcho Peter Horrocks about the Beeb's moves, its digital experiments and whether cord-cutting was happening in the U.K.

Then we turned to the other big item of the week: Tech blog ReadWriteWeb was bought for a reported $5 million from Say Media (itself a roll-up of VideoEgg and Six Apart). The site was founded in 2003, and had lost some key editors recently. The buyout included an announcement that Dan Frommer of Business Insider would become a new editor-at-large for ReadWriteWeb. Finally, we look at two recent popular poll results at MediaShift, looking at cord-cutting (our favorite subject) and gadget gifts for the holidays.

Direct download: mediatwits31.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:40pm EDT

Welcome to the 30th episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and Rafat Ali. This week we have an eclectic mix of topics. First up is the UBS Media and Technology Conference in New York, where the talk of the conference was the rise of over-the-top video services and talks by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes. Special guest Jeff Roberts from PaidContent was at the show and talks about what he heard (and the mainly optimistic mood there). Plus, Roberts comments on the ongoing investigations into price-fixing in the e-books market between Apple and big book publishers.

Then we turn to our seasonal conundrum: What gadget gifts are right for our loved ones? Special guest Brian Lam from the Wirecutter did a great shopping guide for gadgets and non-gadgets so we get his take on the right gifts for everyone. Lam believes that gadgets can be a tough gift to give because it's hard to find the perfect model for each person. He prefers surprising gifts that come with rich back stories.

Direct download: mediatwits30.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:48pm EDT

Welcome to the 29th episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and Rafat Ali. This week we get back from the Thanksgiving holiday and find some interesting mergers happening. First, there's the crowdfunding site Spot.us being acquired by American Public Media (APM) and its Public Insight Network. Guests David Cohn, founder of Spot.us, and Joaquin Alvarado of APM talk about the acquisition and what it means for Spot.us and the future of public media.

Then came news that billionaire Warren Buffett had bought his hometown newspaper, the Omaha World-Herald, for $150 million, as well as some Nebraska papers for $50 million more. Has he gone crazy, or is he crazy like a fox? And finally an HBO exec says they won't be offering up a digital-only package of content directly to people who have cut the cord to cable. But how will that play to the increasing number of folks who don't even have TV sets, and get their entertainment via streaming services or websites?

Direct download: mediatwits29.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:56pm EDT

Welcome to the 28th episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and Dorian Benkoil, filling in for Rafat Ali. This week is a special edition of the podcast dedicated to teaching journalism in the digital age. How can educators keep up with the changes happening in journalism and keep students ahead of the curve?

Special guests for the show are Sree Sreenivasan from Columbia Journalism School and Sarah Hill from the University of Missouri Journalism School and KOMU-TV. Both have been pushing for more social media skills for students, as well as making sure that they still get the essentials for traditional newsgathering. The wide-ranging discussion touched on the popularity of journalism schools, the need for students to have many more skills, and the rise of technology at J-schools.

Direct download: mediatwits28.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:40pm EDT

Welcome to the 27th episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and entrepreneur Rafat Ali. This week we look deeper at the Groupon IPO, which briefly valued the daily deals startup at nearly $20 billion. Our special guests are Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget, as well as Yipit Data analyst Unaiz Kabani, both of whom have done a lot of thinking (and writing) about Groupon lately. In fact, Business Insider's Nicholas Carlson penned a 9,000 word epic insider story on Groupon that was turned into "an e-book":http://www.amazon.com/INSIDE-GROUPON-Controversial-Company-ebook/dp/B00634MNDY/ref=sr_1_10?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1320406625&sr=1-10.

Plus, we look at the recent announcement of a Nook Tablet from Barnes & Noble, an android tablet that will take on the Kindle Fire head-to-head, and provide more competition for the leading tablet, the Apple iPad. The Nook Tablet costs a bit more than Fire but is more open, letting people use more services outside the Amazon ecosystem. Will it be enough to drive sales in the Christmas shopping season, or will the Fire and iPad continue to dominate?

Direct download: mediatwits27.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:47pm EDT

Another episode of the Mediatwits, this time looking at a possible Apple TV set and the announcement of YouTube Channels.

Direct download: mediatwits26.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:37pm EDT

Welcome to the 25th episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and entrepreneur Rafat Ali. This week is the "Beyond the Book series":http://www.pbs.org/mediashift/2011/10/special-series-beyond-the-book297.html at MediaShift, and keeping with that theme the podcast is all about Amazon.com. Rafat admits to being a fanboy of Amazon, with 5 Kindles bought and 1 on order. Special guests Laura Hazard Owen from PaidContent and author James Altucher talk about the growing power and convenience of Amazon in the book business.

On the plus side, Amazon delivers convenience, cheap prices and one-click online shopping. It also has lowered the prices for e-books and has a dead-simple Kindle e-reader, with the $199 Kindle Fire tablet on the way. But Amazon has also taken PR hits for its avoidance of sales taxes in many states, and the poor working conditions at a fulfillment center in Pennsylvania. On balance, is the book-selling behemoth doing a public service or harm?

Direct download: mediatwits25.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:17pm EDT

Welcome to the 24th episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and entrepreneur Rafat Ali. The hot topic is non-profit news sites and whether they can sustain themselves. A recent study was released from the Knight Foundation about the business health of some of these sites, and noted that they still need to experiment to find the right business model to survive. Special guests Mayur Patel from Knight and consultant Michele McLellan talked about their findings and bright spots at sites such as Texas Tribune and the St. Louis Beacon.

Also up for discussion was the amazing success of the iPhone 4S, with Apple selling 4 million of the phones in the first weekend on sale. With all that success, why did Wall Street knock Apple for last quarter's earnings miss? Plus, Google strikes back in mobile with "Ice Cream Sandwich," a new operating system that is sleeker, allows multi-tasking, and works the same on phones as tablets. Bonus futuristic feature: It can use face-recognition to unlock the phone.

Direct download: mediatwits24.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:27pm EDT

Welcome to the 23rd episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and entrepreneur Rafat Ali. The main topic on this show is the rise of the Occupy Wall Street movement, how the media has covered it, and the remarkable "Occupied Wall Street Journal" newspaper. Special guest Arun Gupta is the co-founder of the newspaper and explains the importance of a print publication in political circles. Plus, the head of audio at SoundCloud, Manolo Espinosa, explains how Occupy protesters and journalists have been using the service to capture audio at the protests.

Meanwhile, Netflix backed down on its plan to spin off a separate DVD rental service, Qwikster, so what does that mean in the streaming video wars? And a Pennsylvania newspaper decides to keep its pay wall up even during a flood when residents were clamoring for emergency information. Was the publisher really serving the public by not bringing down the wall at least temporarily?

Direct download: mediatwits23.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:16pm EDT

Welcome to the 22nd episode of "The Mediatwits," the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift's Mark Glaser and entrepreneur Rafat Ali. This week is a special edition dedicated to Steve Jobs, the technology visionary who died on Wednesday. The news spread quickly online and on social media, with so many heartfelt memories, stories and old videos. And of course, in death as in life, Jobs remained a polarizing figure, with so many admirers and so many haters. No one can deny he helped usher in the personal computing revolution, while later disrupting the music and telecom businesses and creating a whole new market for tablets.

The special guests this week are two Steve Jobs biographers: Alan Deutschman, who wrote "The Second Coming of Steve Jobs" in 2001; and Leander Kahney, who wrote "Inside Steve's Brain" in 2008. They're both eagerly anticipating the new biography of Jobs by Walter Isaacson. The discussion also touched on the recent iPhone 4S announcement from Apple, and the tough shoes Tim Cook has to fill as Apple's CEO. Plus, how does the new Kindle Fire stack up to the iPad? Amazon fanboy Rafat Ali already has his on order.

Direct download: mediatwits22.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:32pm EDT