Entertainment

Amazon suspends Prime Video access in Russia, halts shipment of orders

Amazon suspends Prime Video access in Russia, halts shipment of orders

Entertainment

Online retail supermajor, Amazon, has reportedly suspended its Prime Video service for Russia-based customers amid Ukraine’s invasion by the country.

In its announcement via a blog post, the company also stated that shipments of retail products to Russia and Belarus-based customers has been suspended and that it will not accept new Amazon Web Services customers as well as Amazon third-party sellers based in the two countries.

Amazon will also not be accepting orders for the only video game it directly sold in Russia, New World.

The e-commerce company said that it has taken additional actions in

UK: Ofcom launches 15 probes into RT programs over ‘due impartiality’

UK: Ofcom launches 15 probes into RT programs over ‘due impartiality’

Entertainment

British media regulator, Office of Communications, also called Ofcom, has reportedly launched 15 investigations into the matter of ‘due impartiality of programs’ broadcasted on the Russian English-language news channel RT.

Dame Melanie Dawes, chief executive of Ofcom, has described the situation as serious and expects full cooperation from RT in the regulator’s attempt of looking into a potential breach of rules as quickly as possible in face of the Ukraine crisis.

Dame Dawes stated that the regulator has concerns regarding 15 programs, which is an unexpected number from any one broadcaster on a general day, and that i

Hybe becomes first K-pop agency to surpass $838Mn in annual sales

Hybe becomes first K-pop agency to surpass $838Mn in annual sales

Entertainment

South Korean entertainment company, Hybe Co., Ltd., has reportedly surpassed ₩1 trillion ($868 million) in annual sales, becoming the management agency first in the K-pop industry to do so, led by the success of its artists including the global sensation BTS.

According to the agency’s regulatory filing, Hybe’s sales in 2021 have been tentatively recorded at ₩1.25 trillion ($1.05 billion), a 58% jump from the previous year. The agency’s operating profit also increased 30.8% on-year, amounting to ₩190.3 billion ($160 million), while its net profit was up by an estimate of 62%, at ₩141 billion ($118 million).

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UK: Millions of users to pay £43 a year more as Sky TV hikes prices

UK: Millions of users to pay £43 a year more as Sky TV hikes prices

Entertainment

Sky TV, the British telecommunications and broadcaster firm, has reportedly announced that millions of Sky TV and broadband users in the UK will pay £43 extra each year beginning in April, whereas Sky Mobile users will bear the return of £2-per-day roaming charges throughout the rest of Europe, following the firm's announcement of a string of inflation-busting price hikes.

From April 1, Sky's Essential broadband plan will go up by 10% to £27.50 per month, while its Superfast service will jump by 9% to £30.50 per month.

The firm, having over 12 million users in the UK, stated that starting in April, the av

Amazon & Spotify to likely explore takeover bids for UK’s Audioboom

Amazon & Spotify to likely explore takeover bids for UK’s Audioboom

Entertainment

Content streaming giants Amazon and Spotify are reportedly contemplating rival takeover bids for the London-listed podcasting distribution platform, AudioBoom PLC, which has witnessed a significant jump in its share prices and revenues through the course of the pandemic.

It is expected that the two digital giants will be soon deciding on making formal offers this month itself.

Amazon has been speculated to be working with JP Morgan’s investment bankers regarding its potential interest in AudioBoom.

Sources have suggested that an approach from either Spotify or Amazon might be pitched at a signi

Spotify to invest $100M towards content from underrepresented creators

Spotify to invest $100M towards content from underrepresented creators

Entertainment

Spotify, the leading Swedish media and audio streaming services provider, has reportedly announced that it will invest more than $100 million towards the development, licensing, as well as marketing of audio content and music from groups that have been historically marginalized groups.

According to reports, the proposed amount is the same Spotify had paid American commentator and podcaster, Joe Rogan, for an exclusive content deal.

Speaking of Joe Rogan, the streaming platform has been in hot waters lately as public outcry against Rogan’s content, which supposedly has played a role in spreading vaccine misinformation. The outcry h

India: Zee-Sony merger approved, new entity to be publicly listed

India: Zee-Sony merger approved, new entity to be publicly listed

Entertainment

The board of directors of Indian media conglomerate, Zee Entertainment Enterprises, has reportedly announced that it has considered and approved the Scheme of Arrangement between the media company, Sony Pictures Networks India Private Limited and Bangla Entertainment & Pvt Ltd (BEPL).

As per the terms of the merger, Sony Pictures Networks India (SPNI) will own a 50.86 percent stake of the newly merged entity, while Essel, Zee’s holding firm, will own a 3.99 percent stake. The remaining 45.15 percent stake will be owned by public shareholders, according to the definitive agreement.

It has also been reported that Punit Goenka wi

NFT music rights startup Royal raises $55 million in investment round

NFT music rights startup Royal raises $55 million in investment round

Entertainment

Three months after raising $16 million through a seed round led by Paradigm and Founders Fund, NFT music platform Royal has closed another significant round of funding, raising over $55 million from a Series A led by venture capital firm Andreesen Horowitz’s crypto investment division, a16z.

Helmed by EDM artist Justin Blau, also known as 3LAU, as well as JD Ross, a co-founder of real estate startup Opendoor, Royal acts a marketplace for users where they can buy NFTs that represent collective ownership in the works of artists. Royal supposedly represents a quite early yet promising step towards a NFT functionality that lies outside of the spheres of gaming and visual

Pinna to launch its newest podcast series with Kaplan, Kindness Factory

Pinna to launch its newest podcast series with Kaplan, Kindness Factory

Entertainment

Pinna, a prominent audio entertainment platform developed exclusively for kids aged 3-12, recently announced a partnership with Kaplan, an educational service company, and Kindness Factory, a non-profit organization, to make the world a kinder place. Pinna, in partnership with Kindness Factory and Kaplan, is set to launch its newest podcast series- Pinna Original podcast, One Small Act, ahead of World Kindness Day.

The podcast focuses on the Kindness Curriculum, which is developed by the Kindness Factory and Kaplan, and centers on emphasizing the twelve qualities of kindness, including, Collaboration, Empathy, Compassion, Trust, Honesty, Gratitude, Humility, Humor, Perspec