Google AMP Updates, Hearst-Verizon Video Acquisition, Secret to ‘Viral’ Content, Pulitzer Prize Winners, TFP’s April Book Picks, Infographic Pick of the Week, Adobe Experience Manager Mobile v2016.5 Release

Welcome to Technology for Publishing’s roundup of news and tips for media industry pros! This week, we’re sharing stories about publisher-friendly updates to Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages initiative, Verizon Hearst Media Partners’ purchase of millennial video hub Complex, what goes on behind the scenes when social media managers launch new content, this year’s Pulitzer Prize winners, and more.

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  • Nieman Lab ran a story on recent updates to Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), a project rolled out in February that promises publishers faster load times for their mobile pages. For one, Google News now features a carousel of more than a dozen AMP stories, offering “preferential treatment” for participating publishers—in addition to load times that on average are four times faster than those for non-AMP pages, it said. Google’s also increasing support for paywalled sites, though it acknowledged there’s “still more work to be done” in terms of enabling publishers to monetize their content. And the company is improving support for advertising and analytics, as well as consumer-facing features like a liveblog format and a sidebar menu that lets AMP article readers see related stories on publishers’ sites.
  • Kicking its partnership with Verizon into gear, Hearst announced the two are acquiring video provider Complex, adding to the publisher’s growing portfolio of millennial-focused properties, including Buzzfeed, Vice, and United Artist Media Group. Folio reported the deal comes just weeks after the companies launched Verizon Hearst Media Partners, a new venture set up to develop digital video channels targeting millennial audiences. Noting the move is in line with Hearst’s “turnkey approach” to building a millennial content hub, it said Complex is a “sensible acquisition” for the partnership, given it draws a reported 50 million unique viewers a month and has grown that number by more than 400% year over year.
  • Here’s an inside secret: While most people think content goes viral spontaneously, that isn’t always the case. A Digiday post revealed that when social media managers put out a new piece of content, they notify their peers across brands and agencies, who in turn “chat” about it from both personal and company social media accounts. “I often joke that my 100 friends and I run the Internet,” said Savannah Peterson, founder of digital strategy group Savvy Millennial. “Things don’t go viral by themselves. We often syndicate content with each other and tag each other [on social].” The practice—amounting to a social media cabal, the article says—is widespread, with the idea being that any kind of buzz on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or other platforms “raises all boats.”
  • And the 100th Pulitzer Prizes were announced, with The New Yorker taking the first-ever prizes for a magazine brand, as MinOnline reported. Those two winners were Emily Nussbaum, for her television criticism, and feature writer Kathryn Schulz, for “The Really Big One,” a story on the possibility of a major earthquake in the Pacific Northwest. The New York Times provided additional coverage of prize winners, including the Associated Press for a series that exposed slavery and abuse in the Southeast Asia fishing industry, a collaboration of the Marshall Project and ProPublica for reporting on a botched rape investigation, and The Washington Post for developing a database on fatal police shootings in 2015. See the Times site for more on the honorees.

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Image: Nieman Lab

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Posted by: Monica Sambataro

Monica Sambataro is a contributing editor and copyeditor for Technology for Publishing. Her publishing background includes work for leading technology- and business-related magazines and websites.