Jenna Jameson Calls It Quits

 Porn Industry  Comments Off on Jenna Jameson Calls It Quits
Jan 282008
 

Is this true?

[Gossip] Jenna Jameson Calls It Quits
Posted by Ashish on 01.14.2008

Porn queen retires…

Pornstar Jenna Jameson announced her retirement from the business at the AVN Awards in Las Vegas on Saturday.

“Honesty is key,” she said. “I will never ever ever spread my legs again in this industry. Ever!”

Classy.


From 411 Mania

Content Producer Group Forms Piracy Enforcement Company

 Porn Industry  Comments Off on Content Producer Group Forms Piracy Enforcement Company
Jan 272008
 

Content Producer Group Forms Piracy Enforcement Company

Details To Be Provided at XBIZ Hollywood ’08 Industry Conference Piracy Roundtable Feb. 6
From Xbiz

By Ann Oui
Wednesday, Jan 23, 2008

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — Building on a meeting last year in Los Angeles at which a large gathering of content producers and others met to discuss ways to protect their content from thieves, the core members of the group that organized that meeting have formed a piracy enforcement company.

The new company is called PAK Group, Inc., and is a Washington for-profit corporation. A website for the company is not live yet, but according to the principals www.pak-inc.com will soon launch.

Rob Apgood, an industry attorney involved with the new initiative, told XBIZ that the main purpose of the company is to enforce copyright laws and to pursue copyright infringers on behalf of copyright holders who utilize the services of the company.

The main principals of PAK Group will be speaking on the Piracy Roundtable and Meeting at the upcoming XBIZ Hollywood ’08 Industry Conference, where they will outline in detail how the company will work and how copyright holders and others in the industry can become involved with it.

Other than Apgood, PAK Group principals slated to speak are Falcon Foto’s Jason Tucker and Andrew Stoddard of Hush Hush Entertainment.

The Roundtable event will take place Feb. 6, from 2–3:30 pm, at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. Unlike the piracy meeting, the Roundtable is not limited to content producers. Admission is open to anyone who is registered for the XBIZ Conference.

“This is a group that has come together to coordinate and direct its efforts on thwarting piracy,” Tucker said. “If you are a content producer, then you know that your hard work is being raped by people who don’t have a right to display it. If that frustrates you and upsets you, then this seminar will provide you a chance to join a group that will really do something about it.

“Remember, you can be part of this effort even if you are not a content producer. As a member of the community, you can help take a stand against those who cost all of us money.”

“We spent more than a year and a half investing in and building the infrastructure that allows us to document infringements with the push of a button,” Apgood said. “This business model capitalizes on our ability to quickly and efficiently document infringements, tie the infringements back to the producer’s content, identify and show the copyright registration(s) being infringed, and generate the complaint for a lawsuit virtually instantaneously — while the other guys are hunting and pecking to make their claims.”

Keeping costs down is one of the main goals of the new company, Apgood added.

“I’m excited to have a role in this initiative,” Stoddard said. “It’s time we stand up as a group and do something about a problem that isn’t going away by itself. I’m also looking forward to speaking on the Piracy Roundtable and hope to see a lot of faces there.”

XBIZ Publisher Tom Hymes said he is confident that word of mouth will add to the interest in both the new company and the Roundtable.

“I encourage anyone who has a vested interest in this problem — and that’s pretty much everyone — to grab a colleague and come find out what this company is all about and what it means to them,” Hymes said.

In addition to PAK speakers, the Piracy Roundtable also will feature Eros Association President Fiona Patten and Diane Duke, executive director of the Free Speech Coalition.

For press and general inquiries about either the XBIZ Hollywood ’08 Industry Conference or the XBIZ Awards, please contact Dusty Marie at dusty@xbiz.com.

Shy Love Opens Colorado Springs Nightclub – 13 Pure

 Club Nightclub Bar Strip Club Biz  Comments Off on Shy Love Opens Colorado Springs Nightclub – 13 Pure
Jan 262008
 

Shy Love Opens Colorado Springs Nightclub
Co-Hosts Opening Bash This Weekend With Katie Morgan
From AVN
By Peter Warren

Posted: 6:32 PM PST Jan 18, 2008
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Adult star, talent agent, web columnist — Shy Love’s résumé just keeps growing, and with the opening tonight of 13 Pure, she can add club owner to that list of titles.

Together with close friend and fellow porn thespian Katie Morgan, Love is hosting a big opening bash tonight and tomorrow at 13 Pure, with DJing by Mark Ivan and DJ Keoki. The festivities are open to the public starting at 8 p.m.

This new venture, Love told AVN, came about approximately four months ago. “My current partner in the agency owns a couple of strip clubs and restaurants in New York, and I ended up hosting a charity event in Miami at another strip club with another owner,” she explained. “Well, we all ended up in the same circle together, and we decided to open up a club in Colorado.”

13 Pure, she went on, “was a pre-existing club that was built inside of a church, and we basically gutted the inside completely and redid it.”

13 Pure is located at 217 E. Pikes Peak Ave., Colorado Springs, Co. 80903. For more information, go to myspace.com/13purenightclub.

Making Social Networks Work

 Adult Marketing  Comments Off on Making Social Networks Work
Jan 182008
 

Making Social Networks Work
By Jett Lynn

from xbiz:
The advent of social networks can be a pain in the financial ass, but there are ways for marketers to use them to their advantage.

MySpace’s audience grew 24 percent between September 2006 and September 2007, according to Nielsen Online. The top contender in the online social-networking niche now enjoys 58.6 million unique visitors monthly.

As impressive as 24 percent growth may be, it doesn’t come close to the 252 percent experienced during the same period by relative newcomer Buzznet or the 183 percent gained by Club Penguin, both of which nearly broke the 4-million-unique-visitors monthly mark in September.

The upward trend in social network popularity shows no signs of slowing. Even AOL, which hasn’t managed to do much right since the early days of the web, maintains some pretty impressive numbers for its Hometown and People Connection networks.

With its reputation for pushing the technology envelope and exploiting social phenomena, it’s no surprise the adult industry latched onto the social-networking movement as quickly as it could. By the fall of 2007, there were several well-known websites attempting to do for porn what YouTube and MySpace did for (or depending on one’s viewpoint, to) the mainstream. Predictably, the sites became almost overnight sensations, with the most popular, YouPorn, growing its reported 15-million-member audience at a rate of 37.5 percent monthly and outranking CNN, About and Weather.com on Alexa, according to the November issue of Portfolio magazine. On Nov. 1, YouPorn’s rank was 45.

LEGAL LOWDOWN
Sadly, the owners of YouPorn are notoriously reclusive and did not return XBIZ’s requests for comment. Perhaps there’s a good reason the owners of sites like YouPorn don’t do a lot of talking to reporters. Attorney Robert Apgood thinks he knows what it is: Social-networking sites of all kinds face mounting criticism and legal action not only from copyright holders whose property is under attack, but also from consumers who’ve experienced identity theft and privacy invasion in which social networks have played a role.

Copyright infringement on sites like YouTube and MySpace is legendary. It is equally problematic for their adult brethren. Although most have learned to respond to Digital Millennium Copyright Act notices and promptly remove offending content, none yet has found a way to discourage users from posting it in the first place. Worse, “fair use” has become an incredibly nebulous phrase in the digital age, when any piece of copyrighted material may be incorporated in whole or in part into another work simply by employing a few quick keystrokes.

“Lawsuits may force the courts to define clear meets and bounds,” Apgood said, “[Fair use] is kind of a moving target right now, but I think [a court-rendered definition] is an inevitability.”

Although identity theft and privacy invasion may not receive as much press as copyright infringement, they actually may be bigger issues, Apgood said. Federal and state laws prohibit identity theft, but typically they are employed only in financial situations. Potentially of more concern to most social-networking site users, however, may be the kind that amounts to little more than a charade: one person knowing enough about another to impersonate him or her online, sometimes with truly awful consequences. In a milieu in which content of all kinds takes on a life of its own as it’s linked to, shared, quoted and repurposed almost endlessly (not to mention cached by well-intentioned search engines and stored by commercial data repositories), even unintentionally incorrect information and regrettable private photos can haunt job applicants, political aspirants, spouses, community leaders, credit seekers and others seemingly forever.

When someone intentionally assumes the identity of another, posts injurious material in that person’s name, and then sits back to watch what happens, the results can be much like the digital equivalent of arson.

“[Social-networking sites] allow anybody to sign up and pretend to be anyone else,” Apgood said, partially because in general terms the less social-networking site owners know about their users, the better.

Malicious impersonation opens the poster to a lawsuit if the injured party can determine the poster’s identity, Apgood said, “but the site owner also could be liable. They’re safer if they do absolutely nothing about content unless they receive a DMCA notice.”

In either case, site owners are on the firmest legal ground if they make no money from their efforts. Apgood pointed out that Google no longer posts advertising on its image-search-results pages, partially as a result of copyright-infringement lawsuits filed against the search giant by Perfect 10 Publisher Norman Zada. The suits were unsuccessful in forcing Google to stop indexing copyrighted images on the web, but the company no longer derives revenue directly from that effort. That, Apgood said, should be a wake-up call for adult social-networking sites, the majority of which support themselves at least in part by selling advertising on their pages. There is a successful legal firestorm lurking in that business model, Apgood said, because the sites essentially are deriving income from stolen content even if they remove it immediately upon request.

Legal headaches aside, social-networking sites can be a boon for marketers who know how to use them. People who see social networking and user-submitted-content sites as nothing more than thieves’ paradises “are clueless,” according to Oprano owner and self-described “consultant at large” Jim “GonZo” McAnally. McAnally, who counts PornoTube and Xpeeps parent company AEBN among his clients, said adult social-networking sites provide a wealth of opportunities to upsell free-content consumers. In the case of PornoTube and Xpeeps, “we created the traffic others were unwilling to sell us, so the true value lies in the upsell to [AEBN’s video-on-demand] theaters,” he said. “VOD is a dependable, recurring revenue stream.

“It pays to look at [posting content to social-networking sites] like the free samples they give out in the mall: If your product is good, people eventually will buy,” he said. “It’s the cost of doing business, but in a different way.”

The PornoTube model is one way of generating revenue from what otherwise could be a money pit: direct users to your own revenue-generating content by teasing them with free snippets. XTube Director of Sales and Marketing Lance Cassidy said there are other ways to earn a living in the social-networking wilds. XTube is Toronto-based Webnovas Technologies Inc.’s only product, so the developers had to come up with some creative ways to make money.

“It was a struggle [to survive and grow] in the beginning, because the website was completely free,” Cassidy said of the product launched in mid-March 2006. However, at press time XTube was operating well in the black with a staff of 13 people and plans to expand to 20 or more by year’s end. Cassidy said XTube has 3.58 million registered members and receives more than 4 million unique visitors daily. That’s not too bad for a site that bought 5,000 clicks at launch and hasn’t spent a dime on direct marketing since.

HOW DID XTUBE DO IT?
From the very beginning it sold advertising space, but over time that stream became little more than a drop in the bucket. Within the past year the company has joined a number of affiliate programs from which it makes a decent income. It also added its own branded-merchandise store, and that adds a few more shekels to the coffers. Cassidy said two soon-to-be-released sections of XTube — XTube TV and live, interactive video chat — are expected to be moneymakers as well.

According to Cassidy, the lion’s share of XTube’s income comes from its VOD theaters, where users can pay to watch movies by the minute or the day. However, that income source rapidly is being overtaken by another: selling members’ amateur content and splitting the revenues with the creators.

“VOD movies earn more right now because there are more of them,” Cassidy said. “Amateur videos compose a tiny fraction of the number of VODs — about 1,500 amateur videos to 8,000 VODs — so there’s more revenue from VOD currently. But apples to apples, amateur completely blows away VOD.”

Cassidy also said members of XTube are using the site to promote their own content.

“We enable anyone who is a legal producer or owner of content to use XTube to promote their own products,” he said, adding that many studios and paysite owners post teasers with links back to their revenue generators. There’s a catch for affiliates, though: “The affiliate’s sponsor must approve [of posting copyrighted content on XTube],” he said. Some affiliate programs, like SilverCash, allow their affiliates to post promotional content with embedded affiliate codes. Others, like Traffic Cash Gold, do not.

Of course, user-submitted sites are not the only social networks that can be exploited by smart marketers. In fact, AdultWhosWho — a sort of combination MySpace and LinkedIn for adult — has proven popular and profitable for its developer and its users, according to founder Derek Meklir.

“We have more than 4,000 registered users from the adult industry, with another 6,000 or so constantly perusing the site every month,” Meklir said. “The extremely important aspect of those numbers is that they’re all business professionals in the adult industry.”

Although it’s not a direct revenue generator for its members, AdultWhosWho affects their bottom lines by saving them time: It allows them to connect with one another in a variety of ways, setup meetings at future events, disseminate information about their businesses, and finalize deals, Meklir said.

“AdultWhosWho enables people not only to meet new people in the industry, but also to market themselves to the whole industry. Through blogs on the site and [AdultWhosWho-sponsored] private and public events at shows, anyone can market their company to the whole industry.

“The site also enables people to decide on which shows they are going to attend during the year by seeing who else is going to those shows. After the shows are over, it also allows people to reconnect to associates they met at a show so they can proceed with finalizing deals.”

He cited an example: “At the recent show in Florida, I had a lady come up to me and tell me she had set up 22 meetings for that weekend directly through AdultWhosWho. I have also had people who weren’t able to attend shows for a while tell me the only reason people still remember they’re in the industry is because AdultWhosWho kept them alive.”

In the final analysis, Meklir said he’s a believer in the power of social networking — despite its drawbacks — for a very simple reason: “Social-networking community sites allow a person to connect with like-minded individuals from around the world for work or pleasure, and that would be impossible otherwise.”

DVDempire site charges piracy

 Porn Industry  Comments Off on DVDempire site charges piracy
Jan 172008
 

From the pittsburg business times:
DVDempire site charges piracy
Pittsburgh Business Times – by Maria Guzzo

A Butler County-based Web site that sells adult entertainment DVDs has filed a federal copyright infringement lawsuit against a competing Ohio firm.

Right Ascension Inc., which does business at http://www.adultdvdempire.com, filed the lawsuit April 12 in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania against Eastlake, Ohio-based Action Software Inc. and Action-DVD.com Inc. and those firms’ operators, Alexander Belfer of Mentor, Ohio, and Minko Olegi of Eastlake, Ohio.

In the lawsuit, Right Ascension alleges that Action stole copyrighted material from the adultdvdempire.com Web site and placed it on Action’s site, http://www.action-dvd.com. The material included images, photographs and text including movie descriptions and biographical information about movie performers that Right Ascension had created or collected for its site.

Right Ascension requested a preliminary and a permanent injunction against Action, asking that the company stop the copyright infringement.

Right Ascension is asking for $150,000 in damages for each work that was copied from its Web site but does not indicate how many works the firm believes were stolen.

Right Ascension alleges that Action’s piracy is driven by the desire to attract Right Ascension customers to its site, so Action can gain profits.

The case has been assigned to Judge William Standish. A hearing date has not been set.

Porn filmmakers join fight against Internet piracy

 Porn Industry  Comments Off on Porn filmmakers join fight against Internet piracy
Jan 172008
 

from yahoo news / Reuters

Porn filmmakers join fight against Internet piracy

By Matthew Belloni Sun Jan 13, 4:51 PM ET

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – What does Sumner Redstone have in common with Steve Hirsch, founder and president of the world’s largest producer of hard-core sex videos? More than the Viacom honcho might think.
ADVERTISEMENT

Hirsch’s Vivid Entertainment, the biggest name in the $12 billion-a-year adult video industry, filed a lawsuit last month against PornoTube, one of a handful of popular video-sharing sites styled as the dirtier cousins of YouTube, Redstone’s legal nemesis. Similar to the Google-owned video juggernaut, PornoTube has become a destination for free porn by letting anyone post sex videos without filtering out clips that might be copyrighted.

“In other words,” the lawsuit reads, PornoTube “deliberately and knowingly built a library of infringing works … enabling them to gain an enormous share of the Internet traffic, increase its businesses and earn vast amounts of revenues in the process.”

Redstone’s words, almost exactly. Vivid’s argument mirror’s Viacom’s $1 billion claim against YouTube, filed last March and just entering the discovery phase in New York. At issue in both cases is whether video-sharing sites are shielded from liability by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act if they take down videos once asked and don’t profit “directly” from the infringements. (Vivid also claims PornoTube violates a strict child-pornography law by not verifying the ages of the participants in videos posted on its site, though recently an appeals court ruled against that law on free speech grounds.)

The copyright infringement issue is unsettled, but the cases are piling up. Vivid joins Titan Media, a gay erotica publisher that sued the Michael Eisner-backed Veoh, as well as Viacom’s case and the plaintiffs in a class action also pending against YouTube in New York.

Hirsch believes PornoTube doesn’t do enough to keep his content off its site, and, like YouTube, it has leveraged the traffic it now delivers into marketing deals with other sex video producers. It has left Hirsch, a leader in an industry that has welcomed new technologies like the VCR and VOD much more than its Hollywood equivalents, with little choice but to sue the pants off the free sites.

“How do we survive?” Hirsch asks. “We don’t produce videos just because it’s fun. As DVD sales decrease, we need to look to other revenue streams.”

Domestic DVD spending for mainstream fare was off 3.6% in 2007, but Hirsch told Portfolio magazine recently that Vivid’s DVD sales are down 50% since 2004. VOD is the future, he says, but he can’t compete with free. PornoTube and its brethren YouPorn and XTube continue to draw mass amounts of traffic, and they don’t seem to care about monetizing the eyeballs.

North Carolina-based PornoTube didn’t respond to a request for comment. But Vivid’s critics, much like those criticizing Viacom in the YouTube case, argue that most of the porn on the sharing sites is created and distributed by amateurs. And what copyrighted stuff there is probably serves as valuable promotion for Vivid. Hirsch disputes both those arguments.

“Two or three minutes — that’s all you need,” Hirsch says. “After watching two or three minutes of hard-core sex, you’re not going to go and buy the full movie. And if you look on these sites, an overwhelming amount of content is copyrighted.”

Hirsch likens the porn industry’s perilous situation to the music business’ similar reliance on consumers paying for collections of product (albums) that can be enjoyed in bits and pieces — and often for free on the Internet. Total album sales slid 15% in 2007, the third consecutive year of decline.

Hirsch says he and his legal team are gearing up for a long fight. They could probably call Viacom’s lawyers for some tips.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

Making the Sale

 Adult Marketing  Comments Off on Making the Sale
Jan 172008
 

from xbiz:
By Stephen Yagielowicz

I’ve seen a lot of comments on the boards of late, concerning the growing difficulties in making sales – difficulties driven by a number of factors, including one that doesn’t get an awful lot of recognition: an operator’s understanding of basic marketing concepts such as AIDA, as well as the psychology surrounding these concepts.

AIDA, an acronym within marketing circles for Attention, Interest, Desire and Action, is used to describe the four common steps within the consumer’s purchasing decision cycle; and is a concept that I saw vividly demonstrated in a porn purchase I made a while ago, when I saw an adult magazine on a newsstand – and I just had to have it.

No common occurrence, it may have been well over a decade since the last time I bought a men’s magazine; and while I purchase many periodicals, in today’s digital age, I don’t seek out print publications for my porn fix. Indeed, with the exception of the occasional pay-per-view cable television episode of Naked News, I don’t tend to purchase any type of adult entertainment, given the volume of it available for free online and the size of my own personal collection of homemade erotica; featuring myself and my favorite model.

But as this story illustrates, it’s not that I’m unwilling to pay for porn, it’s just that so few producers, publishers or website owners do a good-enough job of selling their wares that I’m willing to pay for them: And I’m not alone, as the current market conditions confirm.

There wasn’t simply one key to making this sale; but several “button-pushing” emotional elements combined, that made me pull out my wallet and step up to the counter. A closer look at these elements may help unlock some of the secrets to reaching prospects today – turning curiosity-seekers into customers and making profits in a challenging marketplace:

The magazine’s title, “Naughty Neighbors” (a part of the SCORE Group), caught my attention first. I’m an amateur fan from way back, preferring the natural beauty of the girl next door to the artifices of a goddess that spent three hours having her makeup done and another few hours having her picture ‘Photoshopped’ to achieve an illusion of perfection.

The “naughty” part of the title is self-explanatory: it’s naughty. “Neighbors” makes me think that I just might see “the little teaser from next door” inside this magazine – which got me interested. The subtitle, “The original amateur magazine,” conveyed a feeling of trust that this publication had been around for awhile; that its content would be adequate; and that it might feature the reader-submitted photos and “real” amateur models I like.

Another thing that caught my attention was the magazine’s plastic wrapper: since it was a “see through” wrapper that didn’t hide the cover’s imagery, it wasn’t necessarily there to keep adult material away from children: but it did keep me from seeing the actual content – which added to the mystery and made me curious as to what was inside…

Website owners take note: rather than giving away too much for free, these folks gave almost nothing away and still made a sale. Had I been able to look through the magazine, my curiosity would have been satisfied, and I would have left the magazine on the rack.

Right away, the marketers had created desire within me: a feeling which increased as I held the magazine in my hand and noticed that it was the only copy left on the newsstand. This led to my feeling that Naughty Neighbors must be a popular choice; the exclusivity of this last remaining issue providing the impetus for me to make an immediate purchase; since if I didn’t get it now, it may not be available later.

The design of the cover art further heightened my desire: 14 thumbnail images plus two larger photos showed the variety of featured models; with extreme softcore teaser shots depicting these wholesome girl-next-door types looking directly (and invitingly) at me.

The sparing use of text (all of which is bright, bold and graphical) provided purchase “hooks” – text like “super-sized edition!” and “23 first-timers!” reassured me that there was ample content and variety to satisfy my needs – and to justify the price – all of which served to fuel my desire and decide to take action.

It’s in taking action that most sales break down. In my example, many potential sales are undoubtedly lost simply because the customer doesn’t want to face the embarrassment of bumping into a friend, family member or co-worker while buying a porn rag at the local convenience store. In the online arena, although ’embarrassment’ is eliminated due to the transaction usually taking place in the privacy of the customer’s home, everything from insufficiently varied payment options to language difficulties, server errors and more, can impact whether or not the prospect takes action – and whether or not it will be successful.

At this point, I’m really interested in seeing how a real amateur paysite, designed with all of these hot-button factors in mind, would perform. For example, using a one-page tour, styled with the same type of layout and attention to detail as a magazine cover and giving very little away, might prove quite profitable in comparison to other approaches.

A Step Further
Beyond this, I want to take things a bit further and discuss satisfaction: while older school marketers such as I, may be more familiar with AIDA; today, AIDAS is more common, as it incorporates an emphasis on customer Satisfaction that was missing in AIDA.

For adult website operators, customer satisfaction is not only about the site’s ability to retain members and enjoy re-bills; but about keeping the sales they’ve already made – since an unsatisfied customer can do a chargeback, making your sales efforts for naught.

To sum it up, sales can still be made even to those folks that wouldn’t normally be buyers if you can hit these prospect’s hot-buttons: attracting their attention, piquing their interest, developing a feeling of desire and then spurring them to take action. The power is yours – especially if you can satisfy your new customers in the process.

AT&T Shies Away from Adult Chat Unit

 Adult Mobile Chat  Comments Off on AT&T Shies Away from Adult Chat Unit
Jan 162008
 

AT&T Shies Away from Adult Chat Unit
From XBIZ

LOS ANGELES – In its acquisition last November of privately held pay-per-call, search and directory solutions provider Ingenio, AT&T received an unwanted bonus; control of the NiteFlirt phone sex and Keen psychic hotline services.

“Ingenio’s technology and products deliver an innovative approach for lead generation and help advertisers efficiently place themselves in front of consumers who are ready to act,” Mark Britto, president and CEO of Ingenio, said. “Combining Ingenio’s capabilities with AT&T’s resources and YellowPages.com’s strong reach and brand is great news for advertisers and creates a foundation to expand this business.”

One area of its business that may not see any expansion is its adult offerings.

According to an AT&T spokesperson, however, the company is not interested in adult operations.

“We are acquiring the pay-per-call and earn-per-call portions, but we are not acquiring the adult portion because it is simply not consistent with our brand,” the spokesperson said.

The Ingenio acquisition was intended as a means to bolster online productivity for traditional print-based Yellow Pages advertisers who may not have their own website, by implementing unique phone numbers for advertisers that allow for efficacy tracking and performance-based pay-per-call billing.

“As advertisers add performance-based advertising to their marketing mix, this investment makes sense for our business,” Ray Wilkins, AT&T group president for diversified business said. “Ingenio’s technology will allow AT&T to expand our robust service portfolio for print, online and mobile advertisers, and that will further differentiate us from our competitors.”

AT&T also expanded its mobile search offerings to include a new online application for iPhone users; along with downloadable, localized search tools that will incorporate the company’s Yellow Pages listings.

Breach worries online porn industry

 Uncategorized  Comments Off on Breach worries online porn industry
Jan 142008
 

from yahoo news / AP

Breach worries online porn industry

By GEOFF MULVIHILL, Associated Press Writer Fri Jan 11, 5:31 PM ET

MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. – When operators of sex-oriented Web sites gather at the Internext convention starting Sunday in Las Vegas, a major leak at a little New Jersey company is likely to be a big topic.

Freehold-based Too Much Media, which sells accounting software for adult Web sites, told its customers last month that a security breach on its computers allowed hackers to access various adult Web sites’ subscriber lists.

Keith Kimmel of Norman, Okla., who runs two Web sites that feature porn, said the breach has the potential to embarrass.

“Would you really want a record floating around the Internet that you subscribe to hardcore bondage?” he asked.

Indeed, it appears stolen personal and company information is being used to bombard subscribers, many of whom would rather not have their identities known, with junk e-mails advertising sexually explicit images from competitors. No credit information appears to have been stolen.

Company co-founder John Albright said someone stole addresses and passwords from Too Much Media’s computers that allowed them to log onto its customers’ porn Web sites as the webmasters and extract information about porn subscribers and the Web sites that refer them.

Too Much Media’s Next-Generation Administration and Tracking Software, known as NATS, tracks referrals to porn Web sites from other sites and calculates how much the affiliate sites are owed. The porn purveyors typically pay the affiliates a portion of their subscription revenue.

Using the e-mail addresses and passwords, the hackers — seeking customers for still other porn enterprises — sent around new waves of pornographic spam, Albright said.

Practically everyone with an e-mail address has to contend with unwanted e-mails from porn purveyors.

But industry experts say online porn customers are especially concerned about keeping their subscriptions private and would not want their actual patronage of porn sites revealed by means of individualized spam that a friend or family member might see.

Jim McAnally, who has published porn on the Internet since 1993, said he’d never heard about such a serious breach in the industry.

“There’s a loss, in my opinion, of user confidence,” said McAnally, of Atlanta, who owns six porn sites and uses the Too Much Media software.

McAnally said he expects lots of chatter at the Internext convention, which follows close on the heels of the Adult Entertainment Expo that ran from Wednesday through Saturday, in Las Vegas, about how to prevent such breaches in the future.

It’s been a big topic over the last few weeks on the online message board he runs for webmasters of adults sites.

Porn is one of the oldest businesses on the Internet. Countless adult sites offer video, photos and even cartoons dealing with sex.

Many of Too Much Media’s customers had security measures in place to block the invasion, Albright said. But he said the company no longer stores the e-mail addresses and passwords of its customers.

“The story’s been sensationalized,” Albright said. “It’s not like people are taking this information to go out there and say, ‘John Smith bought a subscription to this Web site.’ It’s just used to market more porn Web sites.”

Corey Silverstein, a lawyer for MojoHost, a Farmington Hills, Mich., Web hosting company that counts porn sites among its clients, said 13 use the NATS software. All of them reported that their information had been accessed because of the breach at Too Much Media, he said.

“Thousands of individual accounts were wide open for anyone on the Internet to go in and take,” said Silverstein.

The addresses gathered by NATS customer Web sites may be especially valuable to porn companies. As more free porn sites pop up, fewer people are willing to subscribe to the paid ones, Silverstein said.

Silverstein said he expects the online porn world to tighten its security standards because of the Too Much Media problem.

___

On the Net:

http://www.toomuchmedia.com

Porn companies challenged by Internet sites

 Uncategorized  Comments Off on Porn companies challenged by Internet sites
Jan 122008
 

from yahoo news / Reuters

By Adam Tanner Fri Jan 11, 2:21 PM ET

LAS VEGAS (Reuters) – After years of booming sales supported by videotapes, DVDs and the Internet, the adult film industry is being challenged by easy video-sharing Web sites offering explicit content for free.

“We’re dealing with rampant piracy, tons of free content,” said Steven Hirsch, co-founder of privately held Vivid, the best-known studio making sex films.

Vivid once earned 80 percent of its roughly $100 million a year from DVD sales, but last year that fell to 30 percent, Hirsch said in an interview.

The Internet challenge, a topic of discussion at the biggest adult film expo of the year in Las Vegas this week, has already presented itself to the music industry and other mainstream entertainment.

Much of the Internet competition for the U.S. porn world, largely based in southern California, comes from Web sites like Toronto, Canada-based XTube.com, whose format is modeled after Google’s YouTube.

Some of the videos on the XTube site come from commercial studios while others are posted by amateurs.

“We’re not pirates. We are providing a service that people think they can use to pirate,” said Lance Cassidy, one of XTube’s founders.

The Web site has 200,000 free videos, typically 30 seconds to two minutes long, and about 1 percent of visitors buy DVDs or video streams, resulting in millions of dollars of annual revenue, sales director Curtis Potec said. About two thirds of XTube’s viewers are gay, Potec said.

“We’ve had tons and tons of people tell us this is the future of the adult industry,” Potec said. “Most of the money is ads, on any site, mainstream or adult.”

Scott Coffman, president of Adult Entertainment Broadcast Network (AEBN) in North Carolina, says his company started a YouTube-type site a year-and-a-half ago to generate revenue through advertising and drive traffic to pay-per-minute sites.

AEBN limits free clips to three minutes. Users make about a quarter of them.

“They don’t convert that well when you give away so much. There is a fine line between giving away something small, a teaser … and giving away the whole thing,” Coffman said.

He said his company has revenue of about $100 million a year and is facing a lawsuit from Vivid accusing AEBN of piracy.

Vivid’s Hirsch says he will sue other video-sharing sites.

“This industry is going to have to get together and look at these guys that are putting out the stuff for free … so they are going to have to get in line and start paying for it,” Hirsch said.

“If that doesn’t happen and we see all of this free content out there, people are not going to be able to afford to produce movies anymore.”

AIDED BY THE PORN STUDIOS

Videotape, fewer prosecutions, DVDs and Internet advertising created an unprecedented boom the U.S. sex film business since the 1980s.

Many studios post short clips on Internet video-sharing sites as advertising to sell more movies.

“This is something we constantly discuss in our office. Is it too much,” said Garion Hall, chief executive of Abbywinters.com, an Australian company featuring lesbians.

Hall said only one out of 500 viewers clicks over to his site from free clips and of those only one in 50 subscribes.

Some adult industry executives say a solution may lie in future distribution deals with big companies such as AT&T Inc, Verizon Communications Inc, Comcast Corp and Apple Inc.

An Apple spokeswoman said the company would not comment if it had held past talks or was interested in distributing adult product. A spokeswoman for Comcast, the largest U.S. cable provider, said the firm offered adult content in its video-on-demand service but said she knew of no talks for mobile adult distribution.

Sales of sex films to mobile devices occur in Europe but have yet to take off in the United States.

“We won’t make money through adult content,” said Verizon Wireless spokesman Ken Muche.

AT&T did not comment.

Jay Grdina, president of ClubJenna Inc, a division of Playboy, says sharing previews is a mistake. “We’re getting bitten by our own sword,” he said.

Grdina, former husband and on-scene partner of Jenna Jameson, one of the industry’s most famous porn stars, said he has met companies such as Microsoft and Apple to seek wireless and other distribution deals that could allow easy downloads to devices such as iPods.

A spokesman for Microsoft said they were not in talks to distribute adult content.

“The revenues are massive,” Grdina said. But “the biggest fear is share price: what are the shareholders going to say?”

It’s pretty cool to see news stories pop up in the regular media about porn, and the porn business. Also cool to see a few links to porn sites in mainstream everyday news. Kudos to those who interviewed well.