Making Content Relevant Pays Off; NBC Signs Up The Filter

Recommending relevant content can be dramatically effective. After The Filter, a white-label recommendation system, was implemented on the video site Dailymotion, the site experienced a 40 percent increase in time spent. Now The Filter has secured its biggest media partner to date, NBC.

OVGuide.com Gets $5M

ovguideOVGuide.com, an aggregator for video sites, raised $5 million from Baroda Ventures, the investment firm of David Bohnett, founder of GeoCities, who is also acting as OVGuide’s CEO.

OVGuide says it uses a combination of video search and editorial to index video sites and their offerings. Personally I find the site a bit cluttered and clunky. (I mean really — a full-page ad on a search engine? And opening up a new window with its own ad before sending you to another site?)

One aspect that some visitors surely find useful is that the site links to less-than-legal streams of movies and TV episodes. Of course, search engines are most likely legally allowed to send visitors to infringing content, but many sites avoid doing so to maintain relations with the entertainment industry. OVGuide reported more than 12 million unique visitors in January (though comScore’s measure is 5 million).

Also today, recommendation engine The Filter said it had raised an undisclosed amount of additional funding from Peter Gabriel and other angel investors. Updated 2/19: The amount was $1.2 million.

Vid-Biz: Money, Peter Gabriel, CBS

Visible World and PermissionTV Get Money; video ad company Visible World secures $25 million in Series C round; online video services company PermissionTV takes $3 million in venture debt. (Visible World: MediaPost; PermissionTV: paidContent)

The Filter Wants to Recommend Media; Peter Gabriel-backed company follows the music, video, books, etc. that you enjoy and makes recommendations. (The New York Times)

CBS Launches Mobile Citizen-Journalism Site; users can upload photos and videos directly from their cell phones. (mocoNews)

Local TV Stations Form Open Mobile Coalition; group will push to develop open standard that lets stations skip carriers and broadcast directly to phones — and tap into the advertising. (The Associated Press)

Technicolor Partners with CinemaNow; two companies joining forces to offer digital content distribution services. (Video Business)

Network Reporter Quits to Go on the Web; Mike Boettcher leaving NBC to start NoIgnoring.com. He and his son will be embedded with the Fourth Infantry division in Iraq. (Lost Remote)

Mark Rosenthal Joins SpotRunner; former MTV Networks chief joins Internet ad company as vice chairman and president of media platforms. (Broadcasting and Cable)

10 iTunes Add-ons Worth Checking Out

With the 3,700 songs of my iTunes library constantly pushing some sort of noise out of my speakers, iTunes is easily the most used app on my computer. It literally never gets closed.

With it being my most used app, I’ve taken quite a bit of time trying out different add-ons to make the most of iTunes. Below is a listing of 10 apps that I’ve used and feel comfortable saying they’re worth the price you pay for them.

CoverSutra

CoverSutra CoverSutra (previous coverage) is one of my favorite add-ons. It is packed with little features that aren’t immediately apparent when you first start using the app.

A few features include music search, a mini-player, Last.fm integration, keyboard shortcuts, and album cover display.

The $22 price tag seems a tad much, but I’d suggest giving the free trial a run and then deciding for yourself if you can live without it.
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The Filter: Instant Playlists for iTunes

The Filter
The Filter, an ‘instant playlist generator plugin for iTunes’, just launched today. This little plugin, backed by Peter Gabriel, is a great way to build playlists of music on the fly.

The Filter
You can create playlists in a number of ways, but what seems the most intuitive and accurate for me is selecting a few songs that you’re in the “mood” for and then hitting the “F” on The Filter. The Filter then immediately creates a playlist for you with around two dozen songs based on factors such as your listening habits and the listening habits of other users.

This thing is freakishly good at creating playlists you’d like. I’m not kidding.

Setup was a bit clunky at first and it still seems to have a couple of moments where it feels slow, but otherwise this really is one of my favorite new gadgets for consuming music.

Be sure to check out the screencast that covers a lot of the functionality of it.

Oh, and did I mention it’s free?