Bleeding Edge News on Digital Media – You Saw It Here First!

What a week for digital media! TDG has rummaged through this week’s stories and identified five of the most important.

Legal Woes for IPTV?

NTP, having recently acquired Al Gore’s rights to the term “Information Superhighway,” filed suit against Verizon and other IPTV providers for using the Internet to provide “entertainment” programming instead of just “information.” Funding this effort is the recent settlement with Blackberry.

In a related story, TDG received the secret transcripts of the Blackberry settlement negotiations. It seems that the final ruling was decided by a game of “one-two-three-four, I declare a thumb war.” While many find it surprising that Blackberry users, notorious for their thumb dexterity, should lose such a battle, it turns out that repetitive use syndrome impacted their “negotiations.”

Apple and Sony Spin up a New Deal

Apple signed a licensing deal with Sony to put games and movies on the iPod. The new device, PSPod, will hit stores on April 1st and support both robust games and movies. In a unique DRM move, users will be able to download a number of movie titles released by Sony Pictures from the iTunes site and burn them on to UMD discs. To create these discs, users will need to buy a proprietary Sony UMD Universal Hybrid (UM-Duh) which can read and write CDs, DVDs and UMDs on PCs. No Mac version is planned.

Google’s Triple-Play Entry?

Chicago Bulls fans may remember the fuss made about NBA basketball coach Pat Riley’s trademark of the term “Threepeat.” Rumors are now spreading that Google is in negotiations to purchase rights to the term from Riley. The Company believes that as the use of IP-based voice and video services becomes more widespread, it wants to compete in the triple-play space and use the phrase “Threepeat3” (as in cubed) – signifying the third generation of competitive triple-play (cable, telco, and now broadband TV).

Surprisingly, when the service launches, no sports content is expected to be available.

True Content Protection

In an effort to crack down on illegal copying of its DVDs, Playboy has announced a new Netflix-like video service that will send a “personal player” (that is, an actual Playboy employee) to your home with movie in hand, load the movie into your approved DVD player, and press “Play.” When the movie ends, the employee will seize the movie and return it to the vault. Service is only available by lifetime subscription. The new logo is below:

“Fool Me Once, Shame On…Shame on You” – George W

In an attempt to turn attention away from the delayed release of Windows Vista, Microsoft has announced a scaled-down and simple-to-use version of the Vista platform targeted to preschoolers and young children. Leveraging the failed Microsoft Bob program, the team recently announced Microsoft George for Windows or George W for short. While George W seems relatively innocuous, a number of parent groups are up in arms: Microsoft and EA Sports have preloaded George W with a new first-person shooter game – Dick and Jane Go Quail Hunting.

Lighten Up – It’s April!

Okay, the stories weren’t “collected” but “created” (I had some downtime of my own last week). Analysts aren’t the only ones with a sense humor!

By the way, for those of you looking for Part II of “Recasting the Concept of Podcasting,” fear not – it will arrive next week. Thanks for all the great feedback, and please keep your comments rolling.

Have a great April!

The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Digital Trends.