Video services

Facebook Takes Over the TV Guide

Here's a quick look at today's cable news.

  • Facebook pitched TV marketers attending the PromaxBDA confab on the potential for integrating its social network in interactive program guides. (See Comcast Demos New Web-Based TV Service.)

  • Game show producer Endemol is using Facebook Credits to collect micropayments from viewers who want to kick contestants off the German version of Big Brother.

  • TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) is "ripe for a takeover" from Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) or Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) following its US$500 million patent litigation settlement with Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH), according to Bloomberg. (See Dish, EchoStar to Pay TiVo $500M to Settle Suit .)

  • Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) executive VP and top lobbyist David Cohen helped raise $1.2 million for President Obama by charging guests $10,000 apiece to attend the fundraiser at his house Thursday night.

  • More than 100 Comcast employees in Indiana will lose their jobs when the MSO shutters a dispatch center in Indianapolis next month.

  • Targeting low-income households, Comcast will soon begin marketing its $9.95 monthly "Internet Essentials" high-speed Internet service in Richmond, Va. Households that qualify will also be able to purchase computers for $150. (See Comcast Debuts 'Internet Essentials' Tier.)

  • Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) and Comcast are rolling out call-center software from Virtual Hold Technology which tells subscribers how many minutes they'll have to wait to talk to a customer service representative.

  • DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV) and Dish Network stock both hit 52-week highs Thursday.

  • Saudi Telecom Co. (STC) struck a deal with YouTube to add Web videos to its Invision IPTV service.

  • Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) CEO and aspiring musician Jim Dolan joined the board at concert promoter Live Nation. It's not clear if Dolan's position could help his band, J.D. and The Straight Shot, land stadium gigs.

    — Steve Donohue, Special to Light Reading Cable

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