With the start of baseball season, there are more ways to catch games online. Mashable reports, “Twitter will live-stream weekly Major League Baseball games this upcoming season, renewing a partnership between the two companies that’s been in place since 2016. Twitter’s partnership is one component of MLB’s effort to distribute its games digitally and on social media. In addition to the Twitter deal, YouTube TV is a presenting sponsor of the World Series, and Facebook recently scored the exclusive rights to air 25 games this year. Unlike Facebook, Twitter broadcasts aren’t exclusive: Each stream is a simulcast with a team’s local TV broadcast.”
A push toward social media streaming fits with the MLB’s attempt to attract younger audiences. Morning Consult polling finds the audience for MLB tends to skew older and proposed changes to speed up the overall game time would likely not have an impact on viewership
IN THE MEDIA
Recode shares an interview with Financial Times CEO John Ridding recalling the response when they put their content behind a paywall: “reactions in the tech world ranged from skeptical to ‘pretty hostile.’” But now that decision has paid off. “Now the CEO of the FT is feeling vindicated: Subscriptions to online reporting from the Nikkei-owned London-based business newspaper start at $350 per year, and readers are buying. Ridding said two-thirds of the FT’s 900,000 subscribers are digital customers, and subscriptions have overtaken advertising as the chief source of the company’s revenue, also representing about two-thirds of the total.”
The FT’s approach is different in that, “Rather than giving readers a certain number of free articles per month — the ‘metered’ business model practiced by the New York Times, the Washington Post and Wired, among others — it has shifted in recent years to just give them unfettered access for free for the first month. ‘We thought, what do we really want to do?’ Ridding recalled. ‘We really want to achieve the habit in digital that people used to have in print. A metered model kind of goes against that because you’re, by definition, rationing. … Ideally, you spend a month with the FT, you get to appreciate it, you become a subscriber.’”
IN THE ADMINISTRATION
The Hill reports, “President Trump will meet with Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar next week at the White House as the Trump administration tries to encourage several Middle Eastern nations to reestablish diplomatic ties with the country. The White House said in a statement Thursday that Trump ‘looks forward to discussing ways to strengthen ties between the United States and Qatar and to advance our common security and economic priorities’ with Al Thani during the meeting Tuesday.”
President Trump will also head to Peru for the Summit of the Americas happening Friday and Saturday, April 13 and 14.
ON THE HILL
Congress returns with all eyes looking to House and Senate hearings with Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg. Committees will also continue work on FY2019 appropriations with several administration officials testifying.
Monday (April 9): Senate resumes considerationof the nomination of Claria Horn Boom to be U.S. District Judge for the Eastern and Western Districts of Kentucky; House Homeland Security Committee field hearing on lessons learned and the path forward from Hurricane Harvey, to be held in Texas;
Tuesday (April 10): Senate Commerce and Judiciary Committee joint hearing on Facebook, social media privacy, and the abuse of data, with testimony from CEO Mark Zuckerberg; Senate HELP Committee hearing on the nomination of Sharon Gustafson to be general counsel of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the posture of the U.S. Transportation Command; Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee hearing on state perspectives of cooperative federalism under the Clean Air Act; Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee hearing on the Summit of the Americas; House Rules Committee hearing on the Volcker Rule Regulatory Harmonization Act;
Friday (April 13): House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, with testimony from Administrator Brock Long; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 military personnel posture; House Energy and Commerce Subcommitteehearing on challenges and opportunities for high octane fuels and high efficiency vehicles.