Interactive TV News Roundup

-- mSpot Challenges Netflix with Online Movie Rental Subscriptions

-- DirecTV Invests in Targeted Advertising Firm Invidi

-- MTV Spotlights Online Creativity in Inaugural 'O Music Awards'

  • Hoping to lure customers from Netflix and other streaming video providers, startup mSpot Inc. launched a new online subscription movie package that drops the rental price on some new releases to as low as $3. mSpot boasts that it is able to stream many new movies the same day they are released on DVD, while Web surfers that use Netflix, Amazon, or Apple's iTunes Store and other services usually have to wait 28 days until after a DVD is released to rent movies. But mSpot's pricing packages may be confusing to some potential customers. It relies on a combination of monthly subscription fees and a points system where subscribers have to spend credits ranging from 15 credits for a new release such as Disney's "Tangled" to 5 credits for less well known titles such as "Dark Matter." A basic mSpot subscription package costs $4.99 monthly, and includes 20 movie credits, or up to four movies. Its premium package costs $15.99 monthly, and includes 80 credits, or up to 16 movies. Customers can buy additional credits for 25 per credit. More
  • DirecTV, which has stepped up its focus in the last two years on selling targeted and interactive ads to media buyers, invested in addressable advertising vendor Invidi Technologies Corp. The New York-based company said it raised $49 million in its fourth round of financing, which also included investments Google, Group M, Motorola Ventures, Experian, NBC, Verizon, and venture capital firms Menlo Ventures, InterWest Partners, EnerTech Capital, Westbury Equity Partners and BDC Capital. DirecTV plans to roll out Invidi's Advatar software this year in all of its DVR set-tops, according to Invidi. 
  • With award categories such as "Must Follow Artist on Twitter" and "NSFW Music Video," MTV says the focus of its first "O Music Awards" on April 28 will be to honor online creativity. The awards show is scheduled to run April 28, and MTV will distribute it on multiple platforms, including,, and Additional nominees and award categories worth noting: Antoine Dodson/ Gregory Brothers (Funniest Music Short); 50 Cent, Rebecca Black and Bert (Favorite Animated GIF); the Hype Machine (Best Music Discovery Service); Tiny Desk Concerts (Best Performance Series); Gorilla vs. Bear (Best Independent Music Blog); and Marshall Jones (Best Music Hack). More


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