Usage Caps Will Now Apply To 56% Of Broadband Users

AT&T to Impose Limits and Overage Fees on DSL Customers Starting May 2

With AT&T set to implement usage caps and overage charges for all high-speed Internet customers next Monday, May 2, more than 42 million broadband subscribers in the U.S. will be subject to explicit pre-set limits on how much bandwidth they can use on a monthly basis.

All told, approximately 56% of the country’s 75 million broadband subscribers will have some form of caps, according to a Multichannel News analysis based on Leichtman Research Group’s subscriber estimates for the fourth quarter of 2010.

Other major U.S. broadband providers that already have usage ceilings in place include Comcast, Cox Communications and Charter Communications, although they currently warn users who exceed the limits rather than charge them for the extra usage. Internet service providers that do not have specific usage limits including Time Warner Cable, Verizon Communications and Cablevision Systems — although every ISP reserves the right to disconnect a user who violates their terms of service…

A Camera Does Not a Filmmaker Make

…I’m sick and tired. After a week of nonstop talking at NAB I have realized that there are some incredibly talented independent filmmakers out there, and they are by far in the minority. There are those people out there finding legitimate uses for the tools at hand and really using them to tell some incredible stories. However, there are far more posers than anything else. I’m fed up with Vimeo, shallow DOF, slider driven. montage sequences with credits on them masquerading as films. I’m sick of lazy, careless, pre-production, masquerading as cinema verite or so called art films. I’m completely over the pretentious arrogance put out by some co-called “filmmakers” in our industry. Now before you hang me from a tree as a warning to all who dare trespass this sacred ground, hear me out. I’m not saying these pieces don’t have warrant. I’m saying they aren’t films, get over yourself. Don’t even get me started on music videos…

3-D Porn Film Beats Hong Kong Box Office Record Set By ‘Avatar’

A pioneering 3-D erotic comedy has taken the Hong Kong box office by storm, beating the first-day record set by “Avatar” and drawing viewers from mainland China as it eyes a global rollout.

Theater Owners Ready to Retaliate Over Premium VOD

Theater owners are ready to hit back at Hollywood studios if theatrical windows are shortened in favor of premium video-on-demand, TheWrap has learned.

Among the retaliatory measures that exhibitors are weighing:

* Pulling the trailers of offending studios.

* Cutting in-theater signage for those studios’ movies.

* Renegotiating the split of box-office revenues for films that are released on VOD.

Theaters may even refuse to carry a studio’s film, according to an individual with knowledge of exhibitors’ thinking.

Word of a possible counter-offensive comes just days after multiplex operators went ballistic over studios’ plan to distribute films to homes for $30 a mere two months after their release…

R.E.M.’s Michael Stipe: YouTube Has Replaced MTV

…For me the time of the music video has come and gone. The revolution the MTV brought in the 1980s and ’90s is profound. I hate the word “literally,” but MTV provided a common language for all the countries of Europe to be able to speak English when there wasn”t a go-to language. And MTV did that…

SAG and AFTRA move forward

Unions continue progress toward merger

Leaders of the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists have taken another step toward combining the performers unions.

The unions announced Wednesday that reps of the SAG-AFTRA Presidents’ Forum for One Union met last weekend in New York City, resulting in “meaningful progress toward the goal of uniting SAG and AFTRA.”

No date has been set yet for a merger vote, which would create an org of about 150,000 members. SAG members voted down merger in 1999 and 2003 amid arguments that SAG would lose its unique identity as an actors union.

Merger proponents have asserted that a combined union would have greater clout…