Welcome to the 30th episode of “The Mediatwits,” the weekly audio podcast from MediaShift. The co-hosts are MediaShift’s Mark Glaser and Rafat Ali. This week we have an eclectic mix of topics. First up is the UBS Media and Technology Conference in New York, where the talk of the conference was the rise of over-the-top video services and talks by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes. Special guest Jeff Roberts from PaidContent was at the show and talks about what he heard (and the mainly optimistic mood there). Plus, Roberts comments on the ongoing investigations into price-fixing in the e-books market between Apple and big book publishers.

Then we turn to our seasonal conundrum: What gadget gifts are right for our loved ones? Special guest Brian Lam from the Wirecutter did a great shopping guide for gadgets and non-gadgets so we get his take on the right gifts for everyone. Lam believes that gadgets can be a tough gift to give because it’s hard to find the perfect model for each person. He prefers surprising gifts that come with rich back stories.

Check it out!


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Intro and outro music by 3 Feet Up; mid-podcast music by Autumn Eyes via Mevio’s Music Alley.

Here are some highlighted topics from the show:


1:20: Twitter redesign coming

2:00: Future show on brand pages on social media?

2:25: Rundown of topics on the show

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Jeff Roberts

UBS Media Conference

3:55: Special guest Jeff Roberts from PaidContent

4:30: Netflix CEO and Time Warner CEO speak out

6:20: Roberts: Netflix is in a tough position but Hulu is better off

E-Books investigation into price-fixing

9:10: EU, U.S. Justice department have investigations

10:30: Roberts: Not a big deal for Apple; bigger deal for book publishers

12:20: Consumers don’t want to wait months for e-book editions of new releases

14:00: Roberts: Viacom vs. YouTube verdict coming; more on piracy

Holiday gadget guide

15:20: Special guest Brian Lam from the Wirecutter

17:30: Lam: Things made in factories were less memorable for me as gifts

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Brian Lam

19:00: Why gadgets aren’t good gifts for gadget people

21:40: Lam rates iPad, then Kindle Fire, then Kindle Touch

23:20: Lam likes a kazoo trumpet as an offbeat gift, or a model airplane called The Crow

25:00: Rafat wants a special tea kettle

More Reading

Netflix CEO Compares Company To Bank Of America And Oakland A’s at PaidContent

Media Moguls See Netflix, Hulu Video as Top Issue to Navigate at Bloomberg

Netflix CEO: We got overconfident at CNN Money

What’s up with Netflix/Time Warner love-in? at Marketwatch

Cable-TV Honchos Cry Foul Over Soaring Cost of ESPN at WSJ

Apple, e-book publishers in EU crosshairs over e-book sales at CNET

Justice Department Confirms E-Book Pricing Probe at WSJ

Be Thoughtful: A Gifting Guide for Humans at the Wirecutter

Be Thoughtful: A Gifting Guide for Humans, Finale at the Wirecutter

Weekly Poll

Don’t forget to vote in our weekly poll, this time about what gadget you want to get:

Mark Glaser is executive editor of MediaShift and Idea Lab. He also writes the bi-weekly OPA Intelligence Report email newsletter for the Online Publishers Association. He lives in San Francisco with his son Julian. You can follow him on Twitter @mediatwit. and Circle him on Google+