01Feb House unveils bipartisan transparency package People deserve access to public information State Reps. Lee Chatfield and Jeremy Moss today unveiled a bipartisan legislative package to increase government transparency by subjecting the legislative and executive branches to open records acts.Chatfield, of Levering, who serves as speaker pro tempore, said the 11-bill package will subject the Legislature to a new Legislative Open Records Act (LORA) and the governor and lieutenant governor to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The legislation was unveiled during a Capitol news conference today.Chatfield, flanked by dozens of his colleagues, said Michigan is only one of two states that does not allow access to public records of the legislative and executive branches.“We have a government that is intended to serve the people,” said Chatfield. “It’s about time that the people have access to our records.”Moss, of Southfield, is sponsor of the bill placing the governor and lieutenant governor under the FOIA provisions.“My top priority in the Legislature is making sure that our government is accountable to the people of Michigan, and I’m proud to once again lead a bipartisan effort to expand the Freedom of Information Act in our state. I’m pleased that we are renewing this call so quickly after the start of the current legislative session,” said Moss, who serves as House Democratic Whip. “I’m hopeful that our colleagues in both political parties in both chambers will join us to build more trust in our government by making our Legislature and the governor’s office more transparent.”The bills are similar to a legislative effort that was put forth by the House last session, but did not reach the governor’s desk for approval.The LORA bill exempts some records, among them letters to and from people in the district, human resources files, and ongoing legislative investigations or lawsuits.##### Categories: Chatfield News,News
Categories: Iden News,Iden Photos 30Jun Rep. Iden and Gov. Snyder welcome Portage FIRST Robotics team to state Capitol State Representative Brandt Iden and Governor Rick Snyder welcomed the World Champion Stryke Force 2767 FIRST Robotics team to the state capitol today. Stryke Force 2767 competed in the FIRST Robotics World Championship in St. Louis, Missouri, defeating more than 3,000 teams from around the world. The team had to build a robot able to throw whiffle balls into a boiler and place gears on an airship in the arena.“Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics [STEM] skills are so important in today’s world,” Rep. Iden said. “Competitions like this can help get students excited about STEM careers as they develop a passion for these areas. These kids are learning incredible skills that will benefit them in higher education and in future jobs. We are so proud of our Portage team!”For more information contact Rep. Iden’s office at 517-373-1774 or by email at email@example.com
Categories: Kesto News,News State Rep. Klint Kesto, of Commerce Township, has been selected to lead Michigan House task force exploring ways to help Michigan residents facing mental health challenges with statewide tours in July and August.Kesto will co-chair the House C.A.R.E.S. (Community, Access, Resources, Education and Safety) task force with state Rep. Hank Vaupel of Fowlerville.“This task force will help us get a first-hand look at successful programs across the state,” said Kesto, who is also chair of the House Law and Justice Committee. “We need to see how we can help people with mental health challenges, above and beyond what we hear during testimony in Lansing. This comprehensive look will help us explore how people with different challenges are successful in different ways.”The task force will hold public meetings to receive input from individuals and professionals in addition to touring facilities with programs already available. The information gathered will help develop legislation to reform mental health services across Michigan to address veterans’ care, substance abuse treatment, mental health courts, and training for law enforcement.Specific dates and locations of task force meetings will be announced soon.“This task force is crucial for the mental health future of our state,” Kesto said. “There are many individuals and programs across this state, both successful and unsuccessful, which can contribute ideas to moving Michigan forward on specific issues. I look forward to leading my fellow representatives in seeing those concepts first hand and ensuring that all people and programs are succesful.”Other members of the task force include Reps. Edward Canfield D.O. (R-Sebewaing), Fred Durhal III (D-Detroit), Vanessa Guerra (D-Bridgeport), Abdullah Hammoud (D-Dearborn), Robert Kosowski (D-Westland), David LaGrand (D-Grand Rapids), Dave Pagel (R-Berrien Springs), Daire Rendon (R-Lake City), Sylvia Santana (D-Detroit), Jason Wentworth (R-Clare), Mary Whiteford (R-Casco Township) and Robert Wittenberg (D-Oak Park).##### 19Jul Rep. Kesto named co-chair of mental health task force
Residents are invited to join state Rep. John Reilly, of Oakland, for local office hours in Oxford and Orion Township on November 19.“Connecting with residents and listening to their concerns helps me better serve our communities,” Rep. Reilly said. “I look forward to meeting residents to discuss issues involving state government.”Office hours take place at the following times and locations:6 to 7 p.m. at the Oxford Library, 530 Pontiac St. in Oxford; and7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Orion Township Library, 825 Joslyn Road in Orion Charter Township.No appointment is necessary. Those unable to attend may contact Rep. Reilly at 517-373-1798 or via email at JohnReilly@house.mi.gov. 07Nov Rep. Reilly to host November in-district office hours Categories: Reilly News
ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares April 15, 2014;The RepublicSocial change is never an event but a campaign with many strands of strategy and multiple fields of action.A federal judge will allow four nonprofit organizations to join Kauai County in defending a new law regulating pesticides and genetically modified crops in court, according to the Associated Press and the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.Syngenta Seeds, DuPont, Dow and BASF are seeking a permanent injunction against the law. The judge granted a motion this past week to allow Ka Makani Hoopono, the Center for Food Safety, the Pesticide Action Network North America, and the Surfrider Foundation to intervene.The nonprofits wanted to join the case because they weren’t confident in the county’s defense, alleging that the administration doesn’t support the new law. The Kauai County Council passed the ordinance, with the environmental groups’ support, over the mayor’s veto. Their participation in the lawsuit takes their advocacy to a higher level.The attorney for DuPont recommended the nonprofit organizations take part in the lawsuit in an “amicus position” (a non-party to provide views on issues relating to the complaint), according to the report. The judge agreed that that their participation in the lawsuit would be beneficial.The new law requires large agricultural operations to disclose the types of pesticides they spray on their fields and their use of genetically modified crops. Growers also must establish buffer zones near schools, medical facilities, dwellings, parks, public roadways, shorelines, and waterways. Barring any court intervention, the law will be implemented by mid-August.—Larry KaplanShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares January 20, 2015; Portland Press HeraldAnother effort to tax nonprofits has emerged, this time in Maine. Although the property tax proposal surfaced earlier this month, its disproportionate impact on land trusts has only recently become obvious.The Portland Press Herald reports on a provision in Gov. Paul LePage’s state budget proposal that would allow municipalities to tax conservation lands owned by private land trusts across the state. The change would generate income for cities and towns, but add new costs to efforts to preserve and conserve open spaces.Maine’s nonprofit land trusts are reviewing the governor’s proposal, which eliminates the full property tax exemption for nonprofits that own property with an assessed value of $500,000 or more, and deciding how they will respond to the challenge it presents. It exempts nonprofits with smaller holdings.To date, the paper reports that scrutiny of the proposal has centered mostly on large nonprofits such as hospitals, private colleges, and charities that generate revenue while using public services and infrastructure. However, it goes on to say that “taxation of land trust organizations has the potential to reshape the land preservation work being done by nonprofit entities that are often rich in land assets but generate little or modest revenue.”Conservation land usually is not developed—the concept being to protect land from development pressures—so it doesn’t generate income. The fear is that smaller land trusts could be forced to seek donations to pay property tax levies. The Trust for Public Land’s Maine director told the paper that the tax could have “a chilling effect” on future conservation efforts.The governor’s tax overhaul plan is geared at reducing Maine’s income tax rate. It includes the elimination of state aid to municipalities, replacing it by giving them the ability to tax non-profits. The governor’s budget director told the Press Herald that the nonprofit tax applied to land trusts along with other nonprofits (although religious organizations were exempted). The expectation is that some will turn to land trusts and other non-profits for revenue if they lose funding from the state.The Maine Land Trust Network is crafting a strategy to convince the legislature to alter the proposal and exempt land trusts from the nonprofit tax, and it also advised local land trusts to look at other state programs to reduce the tax hit. Virtually all of their lands don’t generate revenue and are held in trust for the public, hence their nonprofit charitable status.The Trust for Public Land, national land conservation nonprofit, told the paper that a tax on land trusts could deter conservation in Maine, which would be a reversal of fortune for the state—Maine had a total of 1.8 million acres in conservation as of 2010, ranking second in the nation after California.This is not the first time state and local governments throughout America have attempted to levy taxes on land trusts and other nonprofits, as many local governments seek ways to pay for such services as road maintenance and education. The argument usually advanced is that the nonprofits’ public benefits don’t warrant tax-exempt status. Most often, the disputes end up in court.—Larry KaplanShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
Share9TweetShare3Email12 SharesSeptember 2, 2015; Chicago TribuneWhile Mayor Bill di Blasio’s plan to link affordable housing to new market rate developments in New York City has gained attention from housing advocates, Chicago’s affordability ordinance has been unnoticed until now. A private developer and the Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago are suing to stop the Affordable Requirements Ordinance on the grounds that the law represents an unconstitutional “taking” of private property.Here’s how Chicago’s Affordable Requirements Ordinance works. A housing developer that is seeking city financial assistance or a zoning change to increase housing density is required to set aside 10 percent of the units for long-term affordability or make a payment in lieu of setting aside units. Affordable housing advocates argue that there is no “taking” of private property, since the ordinance is triggered when a developer seeks a public benefit. The lawsuit was filed just before the “in lieu of units” payments were set to increase. The city council and the mayor tweaked the program this year in recognition of rising costs for developing affordable units.Unlike the notorious New York experience, there has not been a “rich door/poor door” problem in Chicago because most developers have made “in lieu of units” payments to the city. Sixty percent of these payments go into the Affordable Housing Opportunity Fund to support affordable housing development in Chicago. Forty percent of fees go to the Chicago Low Income Housing Trust Fund, which is primarily used by nonprofits to write down rents or to lower the cost of financing new developments targeted to households making below 30 percent of area median income.The Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago has a point when they note that production costs are driving up rents and mortgages. A recent story by the Joint Center for Housing Studies confirms that development costs are cutting into affordability.Increasing density is one potential solution to the production-affordability trap. Rick Cohen explores the density solution in his article “Density Bonuses: A Tool for Affordable Housing Development,” based on a proposal from New Orleans where developers could get bonuses to create more dense developments. Unlike the New York housing market, Chicago is a city of low-density neighborhoods. Chicago residents often view dense developments as “the projects,” which have now been largely demolished.A pending lawsuit raising constitutional issues could easily stop new development in its tracks. So why would developers initiate legal action at a time when demand for new housing is high? Logically, the time to raise the constitutional “taking” issue would have been when the ordinance was first enacted back in 2002. The Home Builders’ government affairs consultant, Paul Colgan, seems evasive about timing of the suit. Crain’s Chicago Business quotes him as saying, “There’s never any good time to file a lawsuit, but the amended ordinance that takes effect on Oct. 13th only makes the situation worse because it raises the fees. The new ordinance just exacerbates the problem.”Housing advocates argue that nothing in the impending changes to the ordinance will modify the basic framework of the law, which was fully vetted in public debate in 2002, 2007, and earlier this year. Could this highly visible lawsuit be an opening gambit in a political negotiation? Is it possible that Home Builders are hoping for a “density bonus” program? Time will tell.As strategies to increase affordable housing stock in “hot” markets proliferate, Rick Cohen provides a nice overview of some of the options in “The Nonprofit Agenda for Regional Affordable Housing: An Advocacy Manifesto.” Meanwhile, following the lead of New York City, other cities like Denver are exploring the options.—Spencer WellsSpecial thanks to Rachel Johnston of Chicago Rehab Network for her help in preparing this story.Share9TweetShare3Email12 Shares
Share2TweetShareEmail2 SharesJuly 24, 2016; New York TimesEven as Bernie Sanders prepares to give the opening remarks at the Democratic National Convention, protestors have taken to the streets in Philadelphia in large numbers to declare their anger at a system that they believe was rigged against the Vermont Senator. And the Wikileaks leak of almost 20,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee does seem to confirm that DNC officials favored Hillary Clinton. One DNC official even suggested in an email that the party use Sanders’s being Jewish (or an atheist, which Sanders denies) to hurt him in the South. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who until recently chaired the DNC, was implicated in the emails. She still plans to open and close the convention but will resign immediately afterward to take a prominent role in the Clinton campaign. Donna Brazile, a vice chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, is to be the interim chair through the election, according to the DNC. For his part, Sanders has been low-key since her resignation announcement, saying Wasserman Schultz “has made the right decision for the future of the Democratic Party. […] While she deserves thanks for her years of service, the party now needs new leadership that will open the doors of the party and welcome in working people and young people. The party leadership must also always remain impartial in the presidential nominating process, something which did not occur in the 2016 race.”But Sanders appears to want to focus acutely at the task at hand, which is defeating the man he calls “perhaps the worst Republican candidate that I’ve seen in my lifetime.”“We have to elect Secretary Clinton, who on every single issue—fighting for the middle class, on health care, on climate change—is a far, far superior candidate to Trump,” Sanders said on Meet the Press. “That’s where I think the focus has got to be.”The Sanders campaign has been recognized as being largely responsible for delivering the “most progressive platform in Democratic Party history.” Apparently, his message to the 13 million voters who supported him during the primary is that the political revolution they launched with him at the fore must move forward.“Together, we continue the fight to create a government which represents all of us, and not just the 1 percent,” he will say, according to the campaign. “A government based on the principles of economic, social, racial and environmental justice.”Sanders endorsed Hillary Clinton for president at Portsmouth High School on July 12, 2016, in Portsmouth, N.H. He’s said he will do everything he can to help defeat Trump. However, Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, does not know whether the “Bernie or Bust” folk, whose suspicions of collusion between Clinton’s campaign and the DNC appear now to be documented, will fall in line.“The wound hasn’t healed yet,” he said. “It’s ripping off the scab and reopening it. In the end, they’re going to vote for her. The impact is on the level of enthusiasm. What [Democrats] were hoping for is a clean convention with Sanders sending a very clear signal with his speech that ‘We’re all united behind Clinton.’ These email leaks just make it harder for some of his supporters to do that in a very enthusiastic way.”But one has to wonder if any plan might be afoot on the part of Sanders and his supporters to take the moment to strengthen the DNC with a less establishment oriented leader who might, as Sanders suggests, open the party up for an energetic and active pursuit of some of those new planks in the platform. Sanders supporter and former president of the NAACP Ben Jealous, in an editorial about the need to eliminate the superdelegate system, writes:The rules committee members won’t be the only ones in the City of Brotherly Love this weekend. Also gathering in Philadelphia will be tens of thousands of millennial activists drawn from the largest, most diverse and inclusive generation of American voters…Everyone agrees this group should be the future of our party and could ensure its dominance in future elections. However, many of them are heavily critical of a party primary process they see as “rigged” against the will of the people and also more likely to be seeking an alternative party where their voice is guaranteed to be heard, or abandon political parties all together. Simply put, making the Democratic Party more democratic is a necessary first step to making it a party they can believe now, let alone for the rest of their lives.—Ruth McCambridgeShare2TweetShareEmail2 Shares
Share39TweetShare1Email40 SharesGreg Abbott / Gage SkidmoreDecember 1, 2016; Dallas Morning NewsAs recently reported in Nonprofit Quarterly’s newswire, sanctuary cities (and now universities) are becoming a hot topic, especially since the national elections. The latest at bat is Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who last week declared he would cut funding to state universities if they assert themselves as sanctuary universities for undocumented immigrant students.Petitions from several state universities, including the University of North Texas and Texas Woman’s University, have been making the rounds, calling on school administrators to follow the model of sanctuary cities, which prevent police from enforcing immigration laws and cooperating with federal immigration officials. The petitioners are also requesting administrators “guarantee the privacy of students and staff regarding their immigration status, forbid federal immigration officials from entering campus property without a warrant, and encourage services specifically for marginalized groups on campuses.”Texas State University’s petition, with over 1,000 signatures, is the latest to have made the news. Among other items in the document, it cites hateful events such as:In the past month, fliers have been posted on the Texas State campus calling for “tar & feather vigilante squads” to “arrest and torture…university leaders.” In addition, a male student was assaulted in a LGBTQIA hate crime just a block from campus.Abbott’s assertion via Twitter about Texas’ response to sanctuary universities came in the wake of this latest news.Texas will not tolerate sanctuary campuses or cities. I will cut funding for any state campus if it establishes sanctuary status. #tcot https://t.co/2wN4eo1YLG— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) December 1, 2016As of now, no specifics to back up this tweet are available. His response, however, is not surprising considering the conservative politician’s prior actions regarding immigrants and refugees. Just two months ago, Abbott pulled out of the U.S. Refugee Resettlement Program. And last year, he supported a Texas House Bill threatening to cut funding to cities that make a sanctuary declaration.But the sanctuary university movement is greater than Texas, just as the city one is. Students and staff from universities around the country are moving to adopt sanctuary status due to President-elect Trump’s remarks during his campaign, promising among other things both to deport millions of undocumented immigrants and end the Obama administration program Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which grants some young people in the U.S. without legal residency status a provisional respite from the possibility of being deported to countries most of them don’t know.—Angie WierzbickiShare39TweetShare1Email40 Shares
Middleware provider Alticast will use ANGA Cable to demonstrate its next-generation platform, Windmill, with demos taking place at the Radisson Blu Hotel opposite the Congress centre.Alticast’s Windmill enables operators to distribute content and services to multiple platforms, with support for cable, satellite, DTT, IPTV, OTT, Cloud-based delivery and hybrid systems. It also enables operators to provide and monetise advanced new multiscreen experiences through its support for Android, according to Alticast.Windmill comprises altiPlatform, a middleware core, with support for HTML-5, Android, GEM, HbbTV and Blu-ray, altiView, which provides Windmill with a user interface allowing for content discovery across broadcast and OTT content, altiAd, which invites viewers to engage and reacts to their responses and altiMetrics, which provides insight into audience response for programmes and interactive services.
The Modern Times Group has acquired control of Swedish open access communications operator Zitius. No financial terms were disclosed for the deal, which sees MTG take an 80% stake in Zitius with an option to buy the remaining 20% in 2016. The Open Access network structure is specific to the Swedish broadband market and provides an open environment where different service providers can sign agreements with the network operator to market their services to the end consumer, typically in multi-dwelling residential apartment buildings in towns and cities. About 750,000 homes, or 16% of all Swedish households, are currently connected to Open Access networks.Zitius provides network management and service packaging services, and installs, owns and operates the active network equipment including routers and switches has agreements with a broad range of third party providers of telephony, data and TV services, who market their services to councils and property owners.
Piracy and associated artificially low-cost competition remains the major challenge facing network service providers in Ukraine, according to Pierre Danon, the chairman of Volia, the country’s leading cable operator.In an interview with Ukrainian magazine Correspondent, Danon said that competition from pirate operators that did not pay taxes and did not pay or underpaid for content by underreporting the number of subscribers they had presented a real challenge to operators that played by the rules. Danon said such operators, unlike Volia, did not invest in upgrading their networks and provided only analogue services, leading to the underdevelopment of HD and advanced services in the country.Danon ruled out an IPO for Volia in the near future. He said the operator would focus on acquiring new operators following its acquisition of Falstap in Dnepropetrovsk and Odek in western Ukraine last year, and on improving sales, marketing and customer service under new CEO György Zsembery.Volia is backed by private equity groups SigmaBleyzer, Providence Equity Partners, Goldman Sachs and Eton Park Capital Management.According to Danon, Volia’s share in the Ukrainian pay TV market in cities in which it was active had grown from 55% to 59% over the last year. In internet services, its share stood at 20%, he said.Danon said Volia’s turnover was now just under US$1 billion (€750 million) and revenue were growing at 2-3% a year. He said profitability was comparable with western countries, with EBITDA coming in at just over US$400 million, producing cash flow of US$150 million.
Middle East satellite operator Arabsat has issued a request for proposals for the procurement of four new satellites – HS3, HS4, AR6E and AR6A.The new craft will be positioned at three different orbital locations covering the Middle East, African, Asian and European markets and expected to include high-power DTH beams in the Ku-band and Ka-band spot beam capacity.HS3 and HS4 will be used to replace Hellas-Sat’s current HS2 bird at 39°East with additional Ku- and Ka-band capcity. HS4 will provide Arabsat with additional Ku-band capacity over Europe and the Mediterranean. The existing Hellas-Sat 2 satellite covers eastern Europe, part of the Middle East and South Africa.ARB6E and ARB6A will have payload capacities in Ku- and Ka-bands. They will support the expansion of Arabsat’s business and provide in-orbit backup capacity.All four satellites will launch in 2016 and 2017. Proposals are due by May 1.“The RFP for Arabsat’s 6th generation satellites reflects the company’s views on the exciting growth opportunities ahead of us and our commitment to capitalise on these opportunities,” said Arabsat CEO Khalid Balkhyour.
Interactive TV technology specialist Alticast has named former Technicolor and Alcatel-Lucent executive Tiaan Schutte as the president of its unit for the EMEA region, based in Amsterdam.Schutte, who has served in executive positions at Irdeto and NCube as well as Alcatel-Lucent and Technicolor, was most recently with Three Media Associates.Tiaan brings a wealth of experience to our efforts in the EMEA market. We are delighted to have him join Alticast to guide our EMEA business activities,” said Alticast chief marketing officer Thomas Jung.“Tiaan is well known and respected by operators and OEMs; we believe his experience and leadership will ensure that Alticast continues to grow our presence in the EMEA markets and anticipate and meet the needs of our customers.”
Ziggo’s digital pay TV revenues were down 1.4% in Q3 due to a decline in subscribers, the Dutch cable operator announced in its latest earnings announcement. In its third quarter figures, Ziggo said that its number of digital pay TV subscribers fell by 4.5% year-on-year to 863,000.However, compared to the same quarter last year, Ziggo’s number of broadband internet subscribers grew by 5.4% to 1.83 million, benefitted by an increased focus on its TV and internet dual play bundle.Digital TV pay TV service revenue fell by 1.4% to €40.3 million, with a decrease in customers partly offset by an ARPU increase and an uptake in VoD.“The number of TV-only subscribers decreased by 20.2% compared to the same quarter last year, landing at a total of 634,000 as at September 30, 2014. The decrease was mainly due to the upsell of the dual play bundle to our TV-only subscribers, as well as churn among our TV-only subscribers,” said Ziggo.The company warned that it expects to continue to experience churn among its TV-only customers as a result of increased competition and a “market moving towards dual and triple play.”Overall in the quarter, Ziggo reported revenue of €402.6 million, up 2.9% year-on-year. Adjusted EBITDA was €228.0 million, up 3.4% year-on-year.
Liberty Global-owned channel provider UPC Poland is to add Polsat Food Network HD to its channel line-up.The channel, which will be made available to UPC subscribers with the operator’s Max package from June 29, will be the 60th HD channel offered on the UPC platform.The carriage deal follows the launch of the HD version of Polsat Food Network, a joint venture between commercial broadcaster Polsat and Scripps Networks, which has acquired Polsat’s rival TVN.
David FraserLiberty Global is tapping wireless technology specialist Devicescape for technology that could make it easier for its mobile customers to access the web on the go through WiFi networks.The deal will provide Liberty Global smartphone customers with access to Devicescape’s ‘curated virtual network’ (CVN) of public WiFi points.The Devicescape CVN is a collection of over 20 mullion public, amenity and affiliate-provided WiFi access points that the company says can deliver a 25-fold capacity boost over a cellular-only network where demand is at its most intense.Devicescape has already supplied its technology to UK cable operator Virgin Media, which is now part of Liberty Global, for the past two years.“Adoption by a company of Liberty Global’s stature is clearly a huge endorsement for Devicescape, and our unique approach to the curation of amenity Wi-Fi,” said Dave Fraser, CEO, Devicescape. “More importantly for the wider industry, this is the first top tier deployment of a service that truly integrates cellular with the huge resource of free, intentionally shared public Wi-Fi. It illustrates how insatiable consumer demand is driving development of new service models which are changing the nature of connectivity service provision.”Graeme Oxby, managing director, European mobile operations, Liberty Global, said: “Wi-Fi is essential to our mobile strategy, boosting coverage and capacity – particularly indoors – while driving economic efficiencies which we can pass on to our customers. By combining Wi-Fi and cellular as we are able to with the Devicescape solution, we are also delivering a significant improvement to the customer experience.”
Technology provider ADB has launched new second-screen companion app features to its graphyne2 TV software platform.The platform is due to be launched at IBC next month.The second-screen application, which is free of charge, is designed to allow service providers to give users access to features such as global search, management of multiple recordings and channel lists, along with the capability to browse multiple personalized VOD libraries on their chosen device, according to ADB.The app is also designed as a communication channel for the operator. Clickable push messages and ad displays allow operators to execute personalized communication campaigns, while interactive messages allow viewers to complete additional actions, such as selecting a movie or activating a new service, according to ADB.“Subscribers want an easier way to get the most out of their content experience, while operators are focused on reducing capital investment on set top box (STB) hardware and operating costson the development of content services,” said Wojciech Doganowski, VP product marketing, personal TV at ADB.“Our second screen application is an elegant way of addressing both of these challenges. Audiences gain an application on their favoured device that allows seamless access to key TV service features from anywhere, at any time. On the provider side, our private video-casting technology allows operators to reuse legacy STBs that are over five years old to handle new content services without the need for major hardware refreshes or expensive development cycles.”
Takis CandilisLongstanding Lagardère executive Takis Candilis has left the media giant, according to numerous reports out of France.Candilis has been a senior exec at the French company, running its TV division and spearheading much of its recent M&A activity and growth.Last year the French conglomerate rebranded its content division Lagardère Studios as part of a renewed effort to expand internationally.It has bought the Spain-based prodco Boomerang and upped its distribution efforts as part of that initiative.Candilis ran that unit, reporting to Denis Olivennes, president and CEO of Lagardère Active.The French news reports suggested Candilis’ departure was motivated by “profound differences” between himself and Olivennes.Finance and strategy chief Christophe Thoral is reportedly filling Candilis’ shoes, although it is not clear whether that will happen on a permanent basis.Candilis has been at Lagardère since 2010 and was at TF1 prior to that.Lagardère has not yet responded to a request for comment.
High-throughput satellite (HTS) services will enable growth in the overall satellite communications market despite a rapid decline in traditional fixed satellite capacity sales over the next 10 years, according to Euroconsult.According to the satellite research group, annual regular capacity revenues will decline by US$2 billion (€1.67 billion) over the forecast period, thanks to intense downward pressure on prices. However, the overall satellite communications market is expected to grow to US$15.3 billion by 2026, driven by uptake of HTS services.With traditional wholesale capacity set to become a commodity, satellite operators are expected to focus on becoming maagned service providers to get closer to their end customers. Growth in satellite TV distribution will continue to emerging markets, alongside government programs for rural connectivity, enterprise networks and cellular backhaul.In more mature markets, some historical businesses will erode, potentially including TV distribution, according to Euroconsult. In the meantime, new growth opportunities for mobility, broadband access and wireless network extension should be enabled by new satellite solutions.“The last two years have confirmed the appeal of HTS for several user segments through the signing of capacity contracts and the endorsement of broadband LEO constellation projects by companies such as SoftBank,” said Pacome Revillon, CEO of Euroconsult and editor of the report.“The leasing of larger capacity volumes will however be at the expense of lower pricing, also in a context of heightening competition. HTS market revenues should increase significantly over the coming decade to more than 50% of FSS market revenues by 2026. Moving forward, HTS systems will represent a driving force for data segments, with regular wide-beam capacity continuing to occupy a complementary role. This regular capacity will remain key to the TV broadcasting business.”