GOOGLE CEO Eric Schmidt phoned YAHOO‘s Jerry Yang on Friday to offer some sort of help in avoiding a MICROSOFT takeover. No details of the call have been released but there is speculation that it could involve Yahoo outsourcing its search business to Google. Google has posted a reaction to the takeover bid on its blog, saying a combined Microsoft-Yahoo will threaten the openness and innovation of the Internet. Microsoft’s General Counsel responded by saying the deal would “create a more competitive marketplace.” Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has scheduled a hearing on the issue for this Friday.

CABLEVISION is expected to officially announce a new service that offers a combination of DVD purchasing and instant VOD access to content. Viewers will be able to order a DVD through a VOD channel on the same day it hits stores and then begin watching the feature immediately. The service is a partnership with Popcorn Home Entertainment. Content will be available from Warner Bros. and Universal.

THE WGA and the AMPTP have reportedly made major breakthroughs in negotiation talks and an agreement is expected soon. Streaming rights have been agreed upon and lawyers are drafting contracts, which will be reviewed by the negotiating committees. However, the Guild presidents have told its members that no deal is firmly in place yet and that picketing must continue.

ESPN will slightly open the gate to ESPN 360’s walled garden, offering free access to users in the .edu and .mil domains and potentially doubling its audience. The site offers live, online streaming of full-length sporting events. Until now it has only been available to users whose ISP’s have cut deals with ESPN. The company is hoping to migrate the cable business model to the web but this may be a sign that this approach is not working.

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC is launching a reorganized broadband video site with multiple genre channels. 1500 clips will be offered with ad support. Most clips will be short, with a new long video added each week. The reorganization comes after Nation Geographic found much higher activity on the NGC Wild site, which uses the genre model. It outperformed the company’s show-based organization models 3 to 1.

About Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the Professor of Advanced Media in Residence at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, co-founder of Metacademy, and the CEO of The Palmer Group, a consulting practice that helps Fortune 500 companies with technology, media and marketing. Named LinkedIn’s “Top Voice in Technology,” he covers tech and business for Good Day New York, is a regular commentator on CNN and CNBC and writes a popular daily business blog. He’s the Co-Host of the award-winning podcast Techstream with Shelly Palmer & Seth Everett and his latest book, Blockchain - Cryptocurrency, NFTs & Smart Contracts: An executive guide to the world of decentralized finance, is an Amazon #1 Bestseller. Follow @shellypalmer or visit shellypalmer.com.

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