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Tag: Tech (51-60 of 169)

Howard Stern to Sirius: 'I am not taking a f--ing pay-cut.'

Howard Stern, whose half-billion dollar contract with Sirius XM ends Dec. 31, lashed out at his boss during this morning’s show following reports that Sirius XM executive David Frear had suggested a paycut was in order. “I am not taking a f—ing pay-cut,” Stern said, according to The Wrap. “Why would I have to take a pay-cut? … Who is this guy to say this in public?” Stern went on to say, “I know what I have done in this company. I am more important than Oprah, in this company anyway. Oprah’s out getting the Kennedy Center honor and I’ve got the CFO announcing to Wall Street that I have to take a pay-cut.”

Sirius XM did not respond to requests for comment. Stern’s last show is scheduled for Dec. 16.

Update: On Wednesday morning’s radio show, Stern explained that he’d investigated Frear’s speech and concluded that The Hollywood Reporter had misinterpreted the CFO’s words when it concluded that he’d said Stern would need to take a pay cut. “David Frear is okay with me,” said Stern, who reportedly conceded that the financial landscape had changed since Sirius merged with XM.

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News Corp. considers selling Myspace

News Corp.’s COO says the company is willing to selling off Myspace. (Recall that it’s no longer “MySpace.”) Chase Carey told Reuters that the company is open to a sale, partnership, or some other option. “There are opportunities here to do 20 things… but that doesn’t mean you’re going to do any of the 20. If there’s something there that makes sense you ought to think about it,” Carey said. Myspace’s recent redesign and rebranding efforts are an attempt to make the site more attractive to possible buyers, and Carey stuck by his position that the social networking platform had “quarters, not years” to turn itself around. “We need to deal with this with urgency,” he said today.

Read more:
Myspace redesigns itself, but is it enough?

Ryan Seacrest reups with Clear Channel

Ryan Seacrest and Clear Channel have agreed to a three-year extension of his contract with the radio giant, clearing the way for Seacrest to build upon his three top-rated shows and serve as a company spokesperson. The New York Times estimated that the entire deal would bring Seacrest approximately $60 million. In addition to continuing his hosting and producing duties with On-Air With Ryan Seacrest and American Top 40, Seacrest will develop new programming, as well as cultivate and promote new musical artists.

Amazon offering $2.7 million for film and script submissions via Amazon Studios

Launching itself into the movie business in a big way, announced Amazon Studios today, a new online venture offering $2.7 million in award money for feature film and screenplay submissions to the site. According to an introductory video on the site’s home page, the awards will go to the films “that tell the best story, not to the films with the most visual polish.” Starting in January, each month, $100,000 will be awarded to the top film, and $20,000 to the top two scripts; at the end of the year, $1 million will go to the best film, and $100,000 to the best script, submitted in the 2011 calendar year.

While anyone is invited to comment and critique the submissions, the films and scripts will be judged by industry insiders — in January, Mark Gill (a former Miramax exec who produced Law Abiding Citizen and currently heads up his own production company, The Film Department), and Michael Taylor (chair of University of Southern California’s film and TV production program), will judge the “test” film submissions.

Through a first-look deal with Warner Bros., Amazon hopes at least some of the winning “test” films will be produced as commercial feature films, with another $200,000 going to any filmmakers who get their films a greenlight. If the film grosses over $60 million, the filmmakers will win a $400,000 bonus.

The site is accepting submissions today.

Myspace has 'quarters' to turn its numbers around

Myspace has “quarters, not … years” to turn its traffic trajectory around, News Corp.’s COO Chase Carey told investors, according to USA Today. While News Corp. didn’t release specific numbers, “the category in News Corp.’s financial report that’s dominated by Myspace lost $156 million in the quarter that ended in September vs. a loss of $126 million in the same period last year, on revenues of $298 million, down 25.5 percent.”

The onetime behemoth of social networking recently launched a redesign, attempting to reposition itself as a “social entertainment” site, geared more strictly to a younger audience. It still reaches a worldwide audience of 95 million users a month, and a U.S. audience of 43 million visitors per month.

DirecTV drops G4

DirecTV will not carry G4 anymore after negotiations between the satellite provider and G4’s parent company, Comcast, ended Sunday. “At this time we are no longer negotiating and we have no plans to put G4 back up,” a DirecTV rep said in an e-mail. “We are constantly evaluating our lineup in a new world where programming costs continue to rise at significant rates. Since G4 is among the lowest rated networks based on the latest Nielsen data, we decided that it made sense to focus on preserving programming that is more relevant to our larger customer base.”

According to a statement from G4, “We have been trying to engage DirecTV in fair and reasonable discussions to continue to carry G4. G4 offered DirecTV the same basic deal we have had for the past three years. However they still plan to drop the network and deny G4 fans the only network that focuses on the popular gaming lifestyle.”

G4 is best known for Attack of the Show, its popular gamer-oriented series which launched Olivia Munn‘s career. It also airs Web Soup and Ninja Warrior.

Ben Stiller to bring Zoolander to Internet

Derek Zoolander, Ben Stiller’s dimwitted model from the 2001 movie, will be reborn as a cartoon on the Internet. The actor told the New York Times that he’ll voice the character in a series of animated digital shorts, and that he hopes actors from the original film, like Owen Wilson and Will Ferrell, will also be involved.

Facebook co-founders give $170,000 to California ballot measure to legalize pot

Facebook co-founder Sean Parker has donated $100,000 to support Proposition 19, a California ballot measure that would legalize marijuana, reports the Associated Press. Parker’s contribution was reported in campaign finance filings that were made available this week. Another Facebook founder, Dustin Moskovitz, has donated $70,000 to Proposition 19, which includes $50,000 last month. Parker and Moskovitz no longer work at Facebook, although they retain ownership stakes in the social networking site.

iPhone rumored to be headed to Verizon (again)

Another day, another “iPhone is going to Verizon” story. This time, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that “Apple Inc. plans to begin mass producing a new iPhone by the end of 2010 that would allow Verizon Wireless to sell the smartphone early next year.” In June, a similar report surfaced, but the legend of the Verizon iPhone goes back even further.

An Apple rep declined to comment for this story. [WJS]

YouTube considering streaming feature films

It’s become the go-to site for watching short video clips. Now YouTube is considering streaming entire feature films. Citing a Financial Times story, The Hollywood Reporter says that representatives from the site have been meeting with Hollywood studios to discuss arrangements for running full-length movies at around $5 each to compete with the likes of Hulu and Apple.

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