Planet Media - A speed-read guide to the major developments of the week

Facebook, Bebo, Nuts, Daily Mirror, Joost, Telegraph Media Group, Dailymotion, Financial Times Group, The Sun, Ipsos MediaCt, Times Media, Jazz FM, Pizza Express, Capital FM, Domino's Pizza, Discovery Communications, Channel 4, BBC, NME, JCDecaux, News Corporation, Nokia, Carat, WPP, AOL, BBC Trust, Ofcom.


Data monitor plans afoot

Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has outlined plans for an expansion of the Government's capability to monitor data held by online services, including social networking sites such as Facebook and Bebo, in reaction to the increase in internet telephone traffic and social media.

Nuts rejigs website

Lads' brand Nuts has overhauled its website,, with the new site boasting new features such as a review section. The move comes as Nuts, which is suffering a loss in print circulation, attempts to drive more consumers to its website.

Mirror Mobile launches

The Daily Mirror has launched its mobile phone service, Mirror Mobile, in an attempt to extend its brand. Mirror Mobile offers news and features from the Mirror's website - - without users needing to register or subscribe.

Joost relaunches

Online TV service Joost has relaunched as a Flash-based, free downloadable service, which also features new social media tools. Previously, Joost users had to download the site's free software to be able to watch its programming. Now, akin to YouTube and Hulu, the News Corporation and NBC Universal online video joint venture, Joost users can stream content direct from the web without having to download a special player.

Moore departs TMG

Telegraph Media Group has parted company with Mike Moore just five months after making him general manager for the group's digital operations. The surprise departure of the former AOL executive comes amid a restructure at TMG, which has also resulted in the departure of marketing director Barry Flanigan.

Dailymotion sharpens up

Video sharing website Dailymotion has introduced a new player to provide users with improved playback quality. The new player brings higher video quality of up to 30 frames per second to most broadband users, giving sharper images and smoother streaming.


Financial Times Group up

Advertising revenue at Financial Times publisher, Financial Times Group, rose 1% year on year during the first nine months of the year. Unveiling a trading statement, owner Pearson said sales at FT Publishing are up 14% year on year. The FT was one of only three quality daily newspapers to increase circulation between August and September.

Sun promotes cover price

The Sun has launched a national ad campaign to promote its weekday cover price of 30p, with a TV ad featuring a cover version of Just Can't Get Enough by Depeche Mode and outdoor projections. The TV ad will run as 20, 40 and 60-second versions and a Scottish version for three weeks as part of The Sun's "All for just 30p" promotion.

Business titles increase

International business titles, including the Financial Times, The Economist and National Geographic, have increased readership in the past two years, according to a survey by Ipsos MediaCT. The study of European business leaders, previously known as EBRS, found that 40% of senior business decision-makers across Europe are now reading international news titles, up 9% on 2006.

Times Media ramps up

Times Media is ramping up its direct marketing spend following a 40% boost in its total marketing.


Jazz FM in Pizza deal

Jazz FM has struck a tie-up with Pizza Express whereby the station will broadcast in all 300 Pizza Express restaurants in the UK. The deal, which kicks off today, involves Pizza Express sponsoring the Jazz FM weekday Drive Time show, hosted by Gary King, which will run with competitions and Pizza Express branding on

Capital FM back on top

Johnny Vaughan's 95.8 Capital FM breakfast show returned to the number one spot in London. His breakfast show had an average weekly audience of 862,000, according to Rajar, placing him ahead of both Jamie Theakston and Harriet Scott on Heart 106.2.


Domino's ditches Simpsons

Domino's Pizza is dropping its decade-long sponsorship of The Simpsons on Sky1. The pizza brand's Simpsons sponsorship began in 1998 and is thought to have been worth £2m a year.

Discovery gets channel slot

Discovery Communications has secured its first channel slot on Freeview, striking a deal to license capacity from ITV-owned digital terrestrial multiplex operator SDN. The channel - details of which have yet to be decided - will launch in early 2009. Discovery said the channel will draw upon its library of factual, entertainment and lifestyle programming and also include scripted acquisitions.

C4 seeks business ideas

Channel 4's initiative to kick-start a wave of new investment in public service digital media, 4 Innovation for the Public (4IP), opened up to the public. The ideas submission system at the heart of the new venture's website is now officially live. It allows anyone to submit new digital business ideas at

BBC leaves London

The BBC has announced plans to produce more network programmes outside London. The Weakest Link will be filmed in Scotland, as will the editing and production of Question Time from 2010.


NME secures Virgin deal

NME has secured a deal with Virgin Atlantic to provide a range of its print and radio content to the airline's passengers. NME Radio is providing an exclusive show - hosted by Iain Baker - for the airline, boasting a mix of alternative music and classic tracks. In addition, NME reviews editor Hamish MacBain will contribute to Virgin Atlantic's in-flight magazine Seatback. The title will also run an NME competition, giving passengers the chance to win a pair of passes to Club NME nights.


News Outdoor stalemate

Discussions between JCDecaux and News Corporation about the potential purchase of its Russian and Eastern European outdoor company - News Outdoor Group - have ended without an agreement. Economic market conditions have been blamed for the failure to secure a deal, despite assurances by Jean-Charles Decaux, joint chief executive of JCDecaux and chairman of the executive board, that the economic crisis would not affect the deal.


Nokia suffers profit fall

Mobile phone giant Nokia has reported a 30% fall in profits to EUR1bn for the third quarter of 2008, with sales falling 5% to EUR12bn. The company missed market expectations on global demand for handsets, but predicted a rise for 2009 as sales in emerging markets offset falling demand in Western Europe.


Carat adds B&B account

Carat is to add Bradford & Bingley's £6m media planning and buying account to its client roster, following the embattled building society's takeover by Santander. An Abbey insider has confirmed the Aegis agency, which handles the media businesses for Santander-owned Abbey and Alliance & Leicester, will be responsible for B&B's business, previously handled by MediaCom North.

WPP orders hiring freeze

WPP has reacted to the deepening financial crisis by ordering a freeze on all hirings until further notice. In an e-mail to senior staff, the group - whose agency empire includes MediaCom, Mindshare and Mediaedge:cia - cites clients' decisions to hold back on marketing spend as the reason for its action.

IN THE NEWS - Bebo plans to branch out into comedy, entertainment and reality shows

Six months into its $850m ownership of Bebo and AOL is beginning to put its money where its mouth is.

The social network is investing big in a batch of six new original TV shows next year.

Building on the success of KateModern and Sofia's Diary, Bebo is developing a commissioning and scheduling policy for 2009 that will broaden out from dramas to shows focused on entertainment, reality or comedy.


"I do worry that Ofcom has misunderstood the public's view of the licence fee" - BBC Trust chairman Sir Michael Lyons criticising Ofcom's plans to potentially divert licence fee money to Channel 4


£100m - Amount of additional revenue Google could make by reintroducing search ads for gambling companies

Source: Greenlight Search.

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