Digital Power: Savvy Specialists

Occupying unique niches in the media landscape


Daniel Graf (Illustration by Christopher Hues)
 
Daniel Graf
CEO, Kyte

It was 50 Cent who showed Graf a window to the future. Graf launched Kyte as an online and mobile-video platform for consumers in 2006. After the rapper-actor started using it in 2007 (and bringing in 250,000 daily page views), Graf had an epiphany. "An advertiser is not interested in what Daniel is doing all day. An advertiser is very interested in what Lady Gaga is doing all day," he says. Now 99% of Kyte's traffic comes from premium content, and in January he added Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment to his list of partners. He wants to be "kind of the Comcast for the next decade," he says.

Adam Cahan
CEO, Auditude

Cahan's specialty is helping content owners identify, manage and monetize video across the Web, even when they're not the ones doing the uploading. Drawing on years of experience at MTV, Google and NBC Universal, he has been successful forming partnerships with media companies like MTV Networks and MySpace (and more to come), which are helping achieve a long-term goal of bringing returns that accurately reflect how much consumers are actually viewing video online. He questions the prevailing market estimates that range from $800 million to $1 billion. "We think it should be eight to 10 times that estimate," he says.

David-Michel Davies
Executive director, N.Y. Internet Week

For the past decade, Davies has played an important and often overlooked role in the development of online media, helping shepherd the Webby Awards and New York's Internet Week. The Webbys now include film and video Web awards, and Davies has recruited Hollywood figures like Harvey Weinstein to judge. "By honoring the best work, we give people some examples of great work they might aspire toward," he says.

Mitch Singer
Chief technology officer and executive vp new media and technology, Sony Pictures Entertainment

A big part of Singer's job is preventing pirates from wreaking the same destruction on Sony's movie business as it has the music division. He believes Sony needs to get ahead of them by embracing digital distribution and creating a paid consumer experience that beats anything they can get from pirated material. So he heads the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, a cross-industry consortium of more than 20 leading companies that is developing standards that will enable consumers to acquire and play content across a wide range of services. "If there are 10 million households who get content for free, there are 110 million households who are willing to pay for it," he says.

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