Around the IT Industry 8/20-8/24

by Modis on August 24, 2012

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Twitter’s Identity Crisis

Twitter, the popular Internet media sharing service, is learning that growing up can be difficult sometimes. With many of Twitter’s unique characteristics being cloned by other services, the pressure is on for the company to monetize its market share and stay afloat in a sea of competition. Now the company finds itself in a position where, in order to stay on top, it will need to truly solidify its identity as either an ad-driven media entity (like Facebook) or an open information network, allowing users to broadcast late-breaking news quickly and easily. The decision is not easy and no one can say what is in store for this Internet icon.

How Much Do You YouTube?

A recent report released by ComScore reveals that over 85% of Americans who had Internet access watched online videos in the month of July, combining into a grand total of more than 36 billion videos viewed in that month alone. Leading the popularity pack is Google’s YouTube site, accounting for nearly half of all total viewing alone. Perhaps more interesting, however, is the fact that this study accounts for the percentage of viewers who are exposed to video advertising: 52% of the U.S. population was exposed to video advertising an average of 61 times during the month, with Hulu delivering the highest frequency of advertisement.

The Death Knell of the RIAA

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has been a champion of the anti-piracy movement for years, seeking to prevent the sharing of digital music and other media from harming their constituents: the record labels. The most recent tax filings, however, suggest that the organization is rapidly losing money to the tune of 44% over the last two years. The primary cause of this loss is cited as a decline in dues from major record labels. Despite this fact, 2011 was one of the best years for the music industry as a whole, the first half of which reported a 1% rise in total album sales – the first increase the industry has seen in six years.

Driven By Brain Power

Australian scientist Hung Nguyen has created a system by which a wheelchair can be operated by its rider using nothing but the mind alone. This amazing breakthrough will provide the possibility of mobility to patients who have been completely crippled, but the possibilities don’t stop there. In time, the technology could be adapted to control any kind of electronic device from televisions to stereo systems or even automobiles.

Social Media on the Decline

With the recent news regarding Facebook’s precipitous decline in stock value since the company’s IPO, it should be no surprise that other companies in the industry are encountering similar difficulties. Groupon, for one, is being abandoned by investors in droves. Groupon’s incredible deals come at considerable costs to Groupon’s clients: the businesses themselves. Many restaurants find themselves losing money on the deals and new clients are reluctant to sign up as a result. Since the company’s IPO in June of 2011, Groupon’s stock has plummeted an astonishing 82%. Should Twitter decide to enter the publicly traded field, it should do so with extreme caution.

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