What you need to know in advertising today


The pay-TV industry just reported its worst quarter to date, and a new revenue stream that had helped to soften declining subscribers is looking weak.

As disruptive companies like Netflix and YouTube have spurred a cord-cutting revolution, cable and satellite companies have fought back with burgeoning virtual multichannel video programming distributor, or vMVPD, packages that aim to retain customers by shifting from one viewing platform to the next. Since the first quarter of 2017, traditional-TV losses and the transition to digital bundles have seemed to move in tandem. The latter helped to offset the former.

But in the third quarter of 2018, the rise in vMVPDs could not keep pace with traditional-TV cord-cutting, and total subscribers fell, according to Wall Street analyst firm MoffettNathanson.

Click here to read more about pay TV’s terrible quarter and what it means for the future of the industry.

In other news:

Vice Media is cutting its staff by up to 15% amid missed revenue and a traffic slump. Vice Media CEO Nancy Dubuc, who took over for Shane Smith in March, is cutting staff at the digital publisher, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Roku’s CEO says his business is doing ‘great’ – even if investors aren’t convinced. The growth rate of the company’s platform business, while still robust, slowed markedly in the quarter, and it offered a disappointing forecast for its bottom line in the fourth quarter.

Eric Schmidt takes the blame for Google’s social networking failures: ‘I suspect we didn’t fully understand how to do it.’ In a recent podcast interview with economist Tyler Cowen, former Google CEO Eric Schmidt said the company’s failure to build the next, big social network was mostly his fault.

New data shows the winners and losers in streaming TV this year – and it’s good news for Disney as it enters the battle for subscribers. A new Parks Associates analysis shows the top 10 over-the-top video services in the US in 2018 and how the leaders changed from last year to this year.

Facebook is launching pop-up stores at Macy’s in a move that’s straight out of Amazon’s playbook. The pop-up will be showcased in “The Market,” which launched earlier this year as a way to bring lesser-known brands to Macy’s.