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After maybe the single most devastating cyberattack in American corporate history, Sony Pictures Entertainment pulled “The Interview."
But Sony CEO Michael Lynton said he wasn't giving up, hinting to CNN that Sony may still try and release the movie.
“We have not caved, we have not given in, we have persevered, and we haven to backed down. We have always had the desire to have the American public see this movie.”
But how exactly would Sony be able to get “The Interview” to the public without showing it in theaters? Well, Sony has a few options, but they’re not exactly bulletproof.
Option number one: Crackle. No, not like the cereal. We're talking about Sony’s online video streaming service. Think Hulu, but with much less content and not quite as popular.
The theory is that Sony could simply release “The Interview” on Crackle to both stand up to an international cyberbully and generate interest in its streaming site at the same time.
Sony would still generate cash since the site is ad-supported. Sony could also require payment from viewers.
But then there are the leaked emails revealing that Sony considered selling Crackle as recently as November, meaning it may not be in love with the service. There’s an alternative though — video on demand.
Time Warner Cable commercial: “Enjoy movies better with Time Warner Cable Movies On Demand.”
Thousands of movies are available through video on demand, bringing new releases to the viewer in the comfort of their own home.
But there’s another problem here as noted by Fast Company — for as big of a corporation as Sony is, it doesn’t have its own video on demand service aside from streaming on PlayStation, which doesn’t have a large enough audience.
OK, so how about the numerous other video on demand services offered by cable companies? Fast Company notes there’s yet another problem here as movie studios typically ask for 80 percent in royalties for the first two weeks of showing a movie.
If Sony were to lower that to offset any cyberattack retaliation worries for cable companies, there’d be the chance they’d never be able to raise the price again.
So both Crackle and video on demand have their problems. But Sony still needs to release “The Interview” in some form or another, at least in the opinion of Ken Paulson writing for USA Today.
"What value is free speech if we're afraid to use it? … This movie can't go unseen. At the heart of creativity is the courage to express yourself freely. Sony needs to summon up that courage right now.”
Sony has yet to announce any specific plan to get “The Interview” to the public. The cybergroup responsible for the attack has threatened to release more data if Sony does indeed release it.
This video includes images from Getty Images.
Sun, 21 Dec 2014 08:55:45 -0500
The U.S. and Cuba are pressing reset on diplomatic relations. And here's one of the many questions coming out of this story: Will Assata Shakur be extradited and face life in prison back in the U.S.?
"I come from a very strong history, and I simply want to live on this planet," said Shakur.
Shakur was convicted of the 1973 killing of a New Jersey state trooper during a shootout. She was shot twice by officers during the incident. (Video Via RBGStreet Scholar)
Shakur was given life in prison but always proclaimed her innocence. She was a member of the armed black nationalist group the Black Liberation Army and the Black Panther Party.
In 1979, Shakur escaped from prison with the help of fellow Liberation Army members and fled to Cuba where Fidel Castro took her in as a fellow socialist and accepted her request for asylum.
In 2013, Shakur became the first woman to be on the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorists List.
New Jersey state is offering a $1 million reward in addition to the FBI's $1 million reward for information leading to the arrest of Shakur.
New Jersey law enforcement has said it hopes improved ties between the countries will lead to Shakur's extradition. But there are a lot of factors at play.
The U.S. is home to many Cuban-born immigrants who fled to the U.S. at the time of Castro's takeover. The U.S. probably won't be handing them over.
And a legal adviser explained to Al Jazeera because the Cuban government has labeled Shakur a political refugee, the country would likely never agree to extradite her anyway.
This video includes images from the FBI.Sun, 21 Dec 2014 08:53:13 -0500
Consider it an early Christmas present. This week, gas prices are their lowest since 2009.
The average gas price in the U.S. dipped down to $2.43 and there are stations in 24 states selling gas for under $2 per gallon.
This drop in price is thanks to an oil boom. The high supply has pushed the cost of oil down to about $60 a barrel. Back in June, the price was $115 a barrel.
The boom is a response to the high oil prices of 2010; the U.S. stepping up its crude oil production to combat those prices. By last summer, the U.S. became the largest source of crude in the world.
As this was happening demand for oil began tapering off in European and Asian countries as economies weakened and fuel efficiency increased.
Pretty soon, supply started to surpass demand, and in September, prices began to fall more sharply.
Making things more severe, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, which produces a third of the world's oil supply, decided not to cut back on production. That move sent gas prices down even further. (Video via OPEC)
And analysts say the decline has not bottomed out yet. Prices are expected to continue to drop through New Years.
This video includes images from Getty Images and music from Kevin MacLeod / CC BY 3.0.Sun, 21 Dec 2014 08:45:36 -0500 News Source: MedleyStory More Local News Stories