YouTube XL Coming to TV

YouTube is finally preparing to take on Hulu with premium content and better quality video from YouTube XL—preparing for a real big screen interface. You know, such as a television. Hulu is rather adamant about not going to television, so this could get to be a bit of a big deal.

youtube xl menu

Mashable’s Ben Parr reviews YouTube XL and says it looks pretty impressive:

what exactly does YouTube XL offer? First, the interface: everything is bigger and is of variable width. The menu is on the left hand side, with options for watching videos, searching for videos, and controlling specific settings. Once you have selected a video, you can watch it, expand it full screen (it looks great fully expanded on a big screen), and browse through related video playlists or create your own. YouTube XL also supports HD video, and from watching clips of the Detroit Red Wings vs. the Chicago Blackhawks at YouTube HQ, the quality stands up to its cable and satellite counterparts.

Google Deprecates PageRank Sculpting, Paid JavaScript Links

PageRank sculpting is an advanced SEO technique that gained popularity in 2007, when Matt Cutts pointed out Google was using rel=”nofollow” to control which videos YouTube passed PageRank value (commonly referred to as “link juice”) to. SEOs liked the technique as something ssite owners could do to direct more link juice to more important pages, and not waste a page’s link authority on navigational links—but not anymore. Or, as Danny Sullivan puts it:

Imagine authority is money, and a particular page has $10 in “authority” to spend. It links out to 10 pages, so each of those pages gets $1 ($10 divided by 10). If it links to 20 pages, each gets 50 cents ($10 divided by 20). If it links to 5 pages, each page gets $2 (you get the math by now).

Newspaper Ad Revenue Drops a Shocking $2.6B in Q1

pile-of-newspapersYup, that’s a B as in billion. Just when you think the newspaper industry can’t take another hit it gets hit with a haymaker. According to TechCrunch, the Newspaper Association of America reported a 28.28% year over year in Q1. That number’s monetary equivalent is $2.6B and that’s a stunning number even to an already beleaguered industry.

TechCrunch says

The sharp decline is caused by the lousy state of both digital and dead tree ad sales: the stats posted on the Newspaper Association of America website show that print sales fell by 29.7% in the first three months of this year (to $5.9 billion), while online sales dropped a record 13.4% (to $696.3 million).

Twitter Study Shows that Tweets are Few and Far Between

twitter-birdIf you are in the social media space you would look at this headline and ask “What is he smoking?” There is no way that most people don’t produce many tweets because how else can the tweet stream be more cluttered and crowded than the start of the New York City Marathon?

HarvardBusiness.org reports on a study of a significant sized sample of Twitter users. They intro their findings with

We examined the activity of a random sample of 300,000 Twitter users in May 2009 to find out how people are using the service. We then compared our findings to activity on other social networks and online content production venues. Our findings are very surprising.

eReaders, eBooks Poised to Grow

K, I know that probably 98% of you aren’t rabidly following the blogs of people on the inside of the publishing industry. So here’s the deal: the publishing industry is getting very excited about eBooks, even without Google saying they’re going to get into the eBook business.

We’ve covered the Kindle here a couple times, but I’m willing to bet most of you don’t have one. Sometimes we like to think that means that eReaders and eBooks are nonstarters. But according to new research from Forrester, that’s just not the case. In fact, as RWW says of the report:

the eBook and eReader market has now hit a point where it is ready to break out of its niche and become a mainstream phenomenon

Google Blogger Adds Search Box

One of the major usability issues with Google Blogger has long been making the millions of blogs hosted on the service searchable on an individual basis. While the Blogger header bar featured a search box, many bloggers didn’t want the Blogger-branded bar “cluttering” their blog.

A year ago, Google first started testing a solution—a search box that could be placed in a sidebar. Like in WordPress, the search box was available as a sidebar widget (“Gadget”)—but only in Blogger in Draft. At the same time, Google announced an embeddable comment form in Blogger in Draft.

The embeddable comment form moved to full-fledged Blogger in October, but the search box remained in Blogger Draft. Eight month later, the search box is finally joining the Blogger widget family.

Your Existing Google AdWords Interface Will Self-Destruct in 30-Days

What happens at Google, once it shuts down the stuff that simply wasn’t working? Apparently, they use that free time to spruce up existing product offerings. We have yet another new Google user interface update to tell you about–this time it’s AdWords.

We just told you about the updates to AdWords Editor, but it appears that the online dashboard is getting an extreme makeover as well. Here’s how it’s going to look:

I received the following email from Google, explaining I’ve got about 30 days to test the new design, before they make the switch mandatory.

***Important news regarding your account***

Hello,

In the coming weeks, we’ll upgrade your AdWords account (Customer ID: xxx-xxx-xxx) to a new web interface designed to make campaign management faster and easier. You can try it now; log into your account to use the new interface immediately.