Publish Gambling Ads, Go to Jail

The British Parliament is reviewing a proposal by the Secretary of State for the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) James Purnell to ban gambling enterprises based outside the European Economic Area from advertising in the UK. According to a Register article, this would include companies such as “William Hill Casino, Betfred Casino, and Littlewoodscasino.com”.

The register goes on to state “The ban will apply to all forms of gambling advertising including television, radio, newspapers, magazines, taxis, buses, the tube, and some websites. If operators, publishers, broadcasters, and advertising companies accept adverts they could face fines or prison, said the DCMS.”

Luckily there are alternatives if you’re based outside the European Economic Area. Countries can apply to be “white listed” or excluded from the advertising regulations. The idea here is that countries who feel their gambling laws are consistent with those within the UK can request an exemption.

Microsoft Takes Aim at Web Video with Silverlight

According to a blog post at CNET, Microsoft’s “cross-browser, cross-platform plug-in for delivering the next generation of .NET based media experiences” also known as Silverlight is set to be released this week.

Silverlight is designed to be a competitive offering to multi-media development tools and plug-ins like Flash. Flash has been the development tool of choice for web based video publishers, and Microsoft would like to usurp Adobe’s dominance in this space.

Martin LaMonica with CNET states “Silverlight videos embedded within a Web page can be resized and have higher fidelity than Flash videos, according to Microsoft.”

Building a better mouse trap may be a good strategy for Microsoft; however, replacing a long time standard like Flash may prove difficult in the long run.

Steve Jobs gets new iPhone, Stockholders get new Learjets

The furor over the iPhone has been driving shares of Apple (APPL) through the roof since the launch of the popular new phone / browser / email client / iPod. Shares of AAPL were up to as high as $132.58 on July 5th up from a high in June of only $125.09. That’s nearly a 6% rise in under a month.

Apple has had it’s fair share of headaches around the iPhone including DVD Jon hacking the iPhone for use on other mobile networks (all be it limited use) and a consumer advocacy group blasting Apple for its battery replacement program.

Study Shows US Mobiles Outpacing Land Lines

If you’re like me, you long ago abandoned your antiquated landline and are exclusively using your mobile for telephone calls. Apparently we’re not alone.

According to findings released today by Ingenio, Inc. (“voice commerce solutions” provider) and conducted by Harris Interactive® nearly 85% of people surveyed admitted to having a mobile compared to only 71% admitting to having a land line. When you dig a little deeper you discover that only 57% of adults between 18-34 have a land line.

More than just calls

Making calls is just one part of what US consumers are doing on their mobile devices. 49% of those surveyed indicated that they’ve used their phone “for more than just making and receiving phone calls”. 57% stated they “anticipate using their phones for more than just making and receiving phone calls in the next three years.”

Paid Video Out, Ad Video In

According to an America’s Network article, paid video downloads are on the way out and advertising based video downloads are on the way in.

Now it might not take a genius to figure out that people are more likely to download a video sprinkled with a few ads over shelling out hard earned cash, but according to America’s Network it seems that Forrester Research felt like digging a little deeper to prove the point.

It may still be a little early to declare paid video dead as America’s Network states “The research firm (Forrester) branded the paid video download market as a dead end and will have its swan song in 2007 when it is projected to generate $279 million in revenue, up from $98 million last year.”

VCPoker.com Can’t Get You Laid

UK poker site VCPoker.com has recently gotten in a bit of trouble with Britain’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for running ads which insinuated that playing poker can lead to success in the bedroom.

As reported by The Register “A complaint was levied at betting house Victor Chandler, which ran a VCPoker.com campaign featuring a scantily clad young lady with the strapline: “You love sex. She loves sex. You love money. She loves money. You have money. She loves you.”

The complaint filed with ASA alleged that the ad campaign “linked gambling with financial and sexual success”; however, an article by Gaming Intelligence Group claims “Victor Chandler said they believed the ad complied with the CAP Code and did not encourage excessive gambling.”

Hong Kong Spammers Beware

Government officials in Hong Kong have recently enacted tough new anti-spam legislation. According to a Yahoo News article the new law will “regulate all messages sent by electronic means that advertise or promote goods or services, including faxes, emails, SMS text and pre-recorded voice messages”.

Penalties for violating the new anti-spam legislation include fines up to $128,000 and jail time for up to 5 years. This new legislation does not address mainland China specifically; however, it does seem to be an evolution of September 2006 legislation in China concerning email data retention.

In addition to enacting legislation addressing spam, China has also recently been trying to take legal and enforcement measures to address rampant copyright infringement within their borders. All of these efforts are an attempt to foster growth in their surging market economy by improving transparency within the normally closed communist nation.