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FCC, FTC seek data about security of mobile devices; Groupon sues IBM


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FCC, FTC seek data about security of mobile devices; Groupon sues IBM


*The FCC and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission sent to mobile device manufacturersand mobile carriers to seek information about how they issue security updates toaddress vulnerabilities in handheld devices. According to a by the FTC, the eight companiesthat received the letters from the FTC are Apple Inc., Blackberry Corp., unit , HTC America Inc., LGElectronics USA Inc., Microsoft Corp.,Motorola Mobility LLC and Samsung Electronics America Inc. The informationbeing sought includes detailed data on the specific mobile devices they havehad on sale since August 2013, vulnerabilities that have affected thosedevices, and whether and when those vulnerabilities were fixed.

*Groupon Inc. filed apatent-infringement lawsuit against International Business Machines Corp.,Reuters reports.In a suit filed with the federal court in Chicago, Groupon claimed that IBM'sWebSphere Commerce platform infringed on a patent for technology that letsbusinesses solicit customers based on their real-time locations. Groupon isreportedly seeking royalties on the basis of the "billions ofdollars" of revenue that IBM earned via the alleged infringement. An IBMspokesman, meanwhile, said the suit lacks merit. IBM had filed apatent-infringement suit against Groupon in March.


* SaltLake City-based inContactInc. reached a settlement with the FCC to resolve a rural callcompletion investigation. According to an official , inContact will pay a$100,000 civil penalty to settle the probe that followed consumer complaintsabout problems with receiving work calls in rural Minnesota. As part of thesettlement, inContact will also implement a compliance plan that requires thecompany to promptly investigate and resolve consumer complaints.

Internet & OTT

* overhauled itstechnology and product engineering, and data organizations. As a result, TimeInc. Chief Technology Officer Colin Bodell is leaving the company. The companysaid in a newsrelease that it appointed Kurt Rao to the newly created position ofsenior vice president, technology operations. In this role, Rao will oversee thecompany's technology operations and infrastructure. Rao previously servedTime Warner Inc. asvice president and corporate chief information officer. Also, Jen Wong, TimeInc. president of digital, will assume oversight of product development andengineering. Chief Data Officer JTKostman will also be leaving Time Inc.

*Netflix Inc.ordered an internationalcompetition series produced by Sylvester Stallone and Dave Broome. The10-episode series, titled "Ultimate Beastmaster," will roll out insix customized versions featuring local languages, competitors and hosts fromthe U.S., Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, Germany and Japan, the streaming giantsaid in a newsrelease. The series, which will also star Stallone, will have 108competitors, 18 from each country, in total. The competitors will compete towin an obstacle course called The Beast.

*Facebook Inc.executive Tom Stocky rejected a Gizmodo report that claimed the socialnetworking giant was stopping conservative news stories from appearing in itsTrending Topics section. In a post on thesocial network, Stocky said the company has strict guidelines that do not allowthe censorship of political perspectives. Also, Stocky said popular topics arepresented by an algorithm, and then they are audited by review team members.

Film & TV Programming

*Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David Cowan dismissed a lawsuit about the mental competence ofSumner Redstone, chairman emeritus of CBS Corp. and Viacom Inc., Reuters reports.While dismissing the suit, Cowan cited videotaped from Redstone, according to a17-page ruling. Lawyers representing his former girlfriend, Manuela Herzer,plan to appeal the ruling.

*AT&T Inc.'sDIRECTV unit and Viva Pictures will premiere Jackie Chan animated movie"Monkey King: Hero is Back" on DIRECTV Cinema, Multichannel News reports,citing an official announcement. The movie will debut on DIRECTV Cinema on May26 ahead of its wide theatrical release in the U.S. on July 29, according to a post onViva's website. The film will be available on video-on-demand Aug. 9.

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher openingfor the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng rose 0.43% to 20,242.68, while theNikkei 225 was up 2.15% to 16,565.19. In Europe, as of midday, the FTSE 100 wasup 0.77% to 6,161.83, and the Euronext 100 rose 1.26% to 864.70.

On the macro front

The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index, Redbook Index andthe wholesale trade report are due out today.

Featured news

The Daily DoseEurope: Spotify tunes into original video; EC to block Three-O2 deal:Spotify Ltd iscreating 12 original short-form series, which will be available to both itspaying and non-paying users in the U.K., Sweden, Germany and the U.S., while EUcommissioners are set to discuss, and will likely reject, the Three-O2 deal inthe U.K.

ConferenceChatter: Piecing together a fragmented digital video industry:Digital Hollywood panelists agreed: The biggest problem facing Internet videotoday is fragmentation and the need for a universal discoverability platform.

CapitolConnection: FCC and STBs: Breaking down the set-top box: SNL Kaganlooks at the various arguments being made on both sides of the "unlock thebox" issue.

M&AReplay: European deals through May 6: eBay, Microsoft, AxelSpringer: The European edition of M&A Replay presents a weeklywrap-up of European media and communications deal announcements, completionsand updates.

The ProgramGuide: International edition: Disney Junior to bring 'Claude' to EMEA; BBC,Netflix to adapt 'Watership Down': SNL Kagan presents a roundup ofrecent programming announcements from various international networks and onlinevideo platforms.

M&AReplay: Deals through May 6: SNL Kagan provides a wrap-up of mediaand communications deal announcements and completions from May 2 to May 6.

Featured research

Economics of Internet: Stacking rights help boost broadcast net OTTefforts: Major broadcast networks' online sites continued to expandtheir total combined online episode count for prime-time programming in thefirst quarter of 2016, with ABC(US), FOX(US) and NBC(US) pushing hardest on the ad-supported OTT front.

Best of SNL:SNL Kagan research and analysis, editor's picks: Presenting theeditor's top picks from SNL Kagan's exclusive research and analysis for theweek ended May 6.

Economics ofNetworks: Discovery Communications powers ahead, focusing on digital and OTTproducts: With "skinny bundles" seemingly the talk of thetown for cable networks these days, Discovery Communications Inc. President and CEO DavidZaslav outlined his perspective on the matter for Wall Street when the companyreported earnings.

Economics ofAdvertising: MSG Networks eyes alternative distribution platforms beyond MSGGo: MSG NetworksInc. reported that total revenues were up 6% to $179.6 million forthe quarter ended March 31. On the earnings call, management said the companyis open to new distribution avenues, such as Sling TV and other virtual serviceproviders.

MultichannelTrends: 2016 broadband forecast driven by cable gains: The U.S.residential high-speed data segment defied expectations of a maturing sectorfor the second consecutive year in 2015, offering increased net adds year overyear despite reaching nearly 94 million subscriptions and accounting for morethan 77% of the occupied households in the U.S., according to SNL Kaganestimates.