JibJab, one of the first silly selfie video makers, acquired by private equity firm Catapult Capital

JibJab, one of the first companies that let people insert selfies into videos, gifs, and e-cards, has been acquired by Catapult Capital. The Los Angeles-based private equity firm announced the deal today, but did not disclose financial terms. A portion of financing was provided by investment firm Cloud Capital. According to Catapult Capital’s site, it […]

JibJab, one of the first companies that let people insert selfies into videos, gifs, and e-cards, has been acquired by Catapult Capital. The Los Angeles-based private equity firm announced the deal today, but did not disclose financial terms. A portion of financing was provided by investment firm Cloud Capital.

According to Catapult Capital’s site, it focuses on middle-market transactions, targeting internet, consumer, and tech companies that are profitable, or nearing profitability, and past the venture stage. The firm’s investment size is usually $10 million to $100 million and it works with portfolio companies to “develop a China angle,” including new revenue channels. JibJab COO Paul Hanges was promoted to CEO after the acquisition.

Founded in 1999 by brothers Evan and Gregg Spiridellis after they saw “an animated dancing doodie streaming over a 56K modem,” JibJab’s big break came during the 2004 presidential campaign, when its satirical “This Land” racked up more than 80 million views. Two years later, JibJab launched JokeBox, allowing users to upload their own videos, photos, audios, and text jokes. In 2012, JibJab branched into children’s entertainment with StoryBots, which is now part of independent production company StoryBots Inc and known for the popular Netflix series “Ask the StoryBots.” According to Crunchbase, JibJab raised a total of $17.9 million, including its last round, a $7.5 million Series C announced in 2009.
.
JibJab’s current products include an app that (similar to JokeBox) lets users turn selfies into e-cards, music videos, and gifs, but of course it is now one of many apps in a very crowded marketplace, competing to insert your likeness into Bitmojis, Memojis, filters and other content.

Gary Hsueh, founding partner of Catapult Capital, said in a press statement that “JibJab has created a successful business through a combination of product innovation, premium content, and entrepreneurial spirit. With the addition of our product, operational, and distribution resources to support the company’s evolution, we intend to accelerate JibJab’s new growth phase. We look forward to working with Paul, our co-investors, and the JibJab team to continue growing the business and expanding into new markets and formats.”

JibJab, one of the first silly selfie video makers, acquired by private equity firm Catapult Capital

JibJab, one of the first companies that let people insert selfies into videos, gifs, and e-cards, has been acquired by Catapult Capital. The Los Angeles-based private equity firm announced the deal today, but did not disclose financial terms. A portion of financing was provided by investment firm Cloud Capital. According to Catapult Capital’s site, it […]

JibJab, one of the first companies that let people insert selfies into videos, gifs, and e-cards, has been acquired by Catapult Capital. The Los Angeles-based private equity firm announced the deal today, but did not disclose financial terms. A portion of financing was provided by investment firm Cloud Capital.

According to Catapult Capital’s site, it focuses on middle-market transactions, targeting internet, consumer, and tech companies that are profitable, or nearing profitability, and past the venture stage. The firm’s investment size is usually $10 million to $100 million and it works with portfolio companies to “develop a China angle,” including new revenue channels. JibJab COO Paul Hanges was promoted to CEO after the acquisition.

Founded in 1999 by brothers Evan and Gregg Spiridellis after they saw “an animated dancing doodie streaming over a 56K modem,” JibJab’s big break came during the 2004 presidential campaign, when its satirical “This Land” racked up more than 80 million views. Two years later, JibJab launched JokeBox, allowing users to upload their own videos, photos, audios, and text jokes. In 2012, JibJab branched into children’s entertainment with StoryBots, which is now part of independent production company StoryBots Inc and known for the popular Netflix series “Ask the StoryBots.” According to Crunchbase, JibJab raised a total of $17.9 million, including its last round, a $7.5 million Series C announced in 2009.
.
JibJab’s current products include an app that (similar to JokeBox) lets users turn selfies into e-cards, music videos, and gifs, but of course it is now one of many apps in a very crowded marketplace, competing to insert your likeness into Bitmojis, Memojis, filters and other content.

Gary Hsueh, founding partner of Catapult Capital, said in a press statement that “JibJab has created a successful business through a combination of product innovation, premium content, and entrepreneurial spirit. With the addition of our product, operational, and distribution resources to support the company’s evolution, we intend to accelerate JibJab’s new growth phase. We look forward to working with Paul, our co-investors, and the JibJab team to continue growing the business and expanding into new markets and formats.”

How to extract audio from video on iPhone, iPad and Mac

Creating a sound file from a video on iPhone, iPad, or Mac is easier than you think. This tutorial shows you how to extract audio from video on your device.

Have you ever recorded video with your iOS device simply to capture the sound and weren’t concerned about the picture? Or, maybe you have a video of something where the audio is just as memorable and would like to save that sound as a separate file to listen to.

Pulling the audio from a video may sound like a complicated task, but it really isn’t. If this is something you’ve been wondering how to do, then we’ve got you covered. This tutorial shows you how to extract audio from video on iPhone, iPad, and Mac.... Read the rest of this post here


"How to extract audio from video on iPhone, iPad and Mac" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
Make sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

YouTube will “ramp up” enforcement of its policies against dangerous challenges and pranks

YouTube announced several policy updates today, including more stringent enforcement of its ban on videos of dangerous challenges and pranks. In a FAQ posted to its support site, YouTube wrote “we’ve updated our external guidelines to make it clear that challenges like the Tide Pod challenge or the Fire challenge, that can cause death and/or […]

YouTube announced several policy updates today, including more stringent enforcement of its ban on videos of dangerous challenges and pranks.

In a FAQ posted to its support site, YouTube wrote “we’ve updated our external guidelines to make it clear that challenges like the Tide Pod challenge or the Fire challenge, that can cause death and/or have caused death in some instances, have no place on YouTube.” Its policies also extend to pranks “with a perceived danger of serious physical injury,” like home invasion or drive-by shooting pranks.

While YouTube did not mention it, its announcement comes the day after a teenager crashed a car while driving blindfolded for the Bird Box challenge, inspired by the Netflix movie of the same name. The meme, which involves doing different things while blindfolded, became popular enough that Netflix itself issued a warning (“PLEASE DO NOT HURT YOURSELVES WITH THIS BIRD BOX CHALLENGE”) earlier this month.

YouTube also said it bans videos of pranks that can “cause children to experience severe emotional distress, meaning something so bad it could leave the child traumatized for life.” The platform said it worked with child psychologists “to develop guidelines around the types of pranks that cross this line. Examples include, the fake death of a parent or severe abandonment or shaming for mistakes.”

The psychological well-being of children featured in videos gained attention in 2017 when DaddyOFive, a YouTube channel run by Mike and Heather Martin, was taken down after users became concerned about the abusive nature of the pranks played by the Martins on their young children. The Martins ended up losing custody of two of the children, who were returned to their biological mother, and entering an Alford plea to child neglect charges, resulting in five years of supervised probation.

In addition to updating its pranks and challenges policy, YouTube said it will also begin issuing strikes for custom thumbnails that violate policies by showing pornography or graphic violence, as well as external sites linked to YouTube that don’t follow community guidelines.

YouTubers have two months during which videos that violate those guidelines will be removed, but they won’t be issued a strike. After the grace period is up, videos will be removed and their creators may also be issued a strike.

How to download your Flickr photos and videos

If you’ve decided to move away from Flickr or just back up your items on your computer, here are a few ways to download your Flickr photos and videos.

Flickr on MacBook screen

With the recent changes to Flickr, users with free accounts are now limited to 1,000 photos or videos unless they opt for a paid plan. If you have more than the limited number of items and aren’t quite ready to shell out the cash for an unlimited plan, you may want to take your photos elsewhere.

If so, here’s how you can download your Flickr photos and videos.... Read the rest of this post here


"How to download your Flickr photos and videos" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
Make sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

How to download your Flickr photos and videos

If you’ve decided to move away from Flickr or just back up your items on your computer, here are a few ways to download your Flickr photos and videos.

Flickr on MacBook screen

With the recent changes to Flickr, users with free accounts are now limited to 1,000 photos or videos unless they opt for a paid plan. If you have more than the limited number of items and aren’t quite ready to shell out the cash for an unlimited plan, you may want to take your photos elsewhere.

If so, here’s how you can download your Flickr photos and videos.... Read the rest of this post here


"How to download your Flickr photos and videos" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
Make sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

Transfer iPhone data with MacX MediaTrans: license + iPhone giveaway [sponsor]

For a limited time only, all iDB readers can grab a completely free license for MacX MediaTrans, a $59.95 value. Do it now before this deal expires on January 10, 2019.

We all understand the importance of backing up the iPhone contents. Those memorable travel videos, heartwarming family photos, hot songs are the treasures of our life. To achieve the successful iPhone backup, a handy App like MacX MediaTrans is a must have. With this tool, you can easily browse and transfer the music, photos, videos, books, podcasts and other data on your iPhone or iPad, selectively back up them on your Mac computer, optionally encrypt your data and much more.... Read the rest of this post here


"Transfer iPhone data with MacX MediaTrans: license + iPhone giveaway [sponsor]" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
Make sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

DearMob iPhone Manager: transfer photos from iPhone to computer with high flexibility [sponsor]

Your iPhone/iPad is packed to the gills with photos and videos? Sounds like a typical problem. What you really need is a fast way to manage and selectively move the media items both ways between your iOS device and your computer. This is the best way to free up valuable storage space on your device and ensure you’ll be able to shoot those festive moments uninterrupted.

Transferring photos between an iPhone and your computer is a process you have little control over beyond choosing a group of photos to move. Any higher level of iOS media file management requires a specialized app like DearMob’s iPhone Manager which offers a bunch of advanced photo-syncing features and advantages over Apple’s default method.... Read the rest of this post here


"DearMob iPhone Manager: transfer photos from iPhone to computer with high flexibility [sponsor]" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
Make sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

How to easily rotate videos on iPhone or iPad

Do you need to rotate a video that you captured on your iOS device? This tutorial shows you how easy it is to rotate videos on iPhone and iPad.

Rotate Videos on iPhone with iMovie

When you capture a video with your iPhone or iPad, there may be a time when you need to rotate it. Maybe it was supposed to be landscape but somehow recorded in portrait view. Maybe you want to change it from portrait to landscape view to create a specific effect. Whatever the case may be, you can rotate your videos quite easily on your device.

This tutorial shows you how to rotate videos on iPhone or iPad right from the Photos app using iMovie.... Read the rest of this post here


"How to easily rotate videos on iPhone or iPad" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
Make sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

Google CEO admits company must better address the spread of conspiracy theories on YouTube

Google CEO Sundar Pichai admitted today that YouTube needs to do better in dealing with conspiracy content on its site that can lead to real world violence. During his testimony on Tuesday before the House Judiciary Committee, the exec was questioned on how YouTube handles extremist content which promote conspiracy theories like Pizzagate and, more recently, […]

Google CEO Sundar Pichai admitted today that YouTube needs to do better in dealing with conspiracy content on its site that can lead to real world violence. During his testimony on Tuesday before the House Judiciary Committee, the exec was questioned on how YouTube handles extremist content which promote conspiracy theories like Pizzagate and, more recently, a Hillary Clinton-focused conspiracy theory dubbed Frazzledrip.

According to an article in Monday’s The Washington Post, Frazzledrip is a variation on Pizzagate that began spreading on YouTube this spring.

In a bizarre series of questions, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) asked Pichai if he knew what Frazzledrip was.

Pichai replied that he was “not aware of the specifics about it.”

Raskin went on to explain that the recommendation engine on YouTube has been suggesting videos that claim politicians, celebrities and other leading figures were “sexually abusing and consuming the remains of children, often in satanic rituals.” He said these new conspiracist claims were echoing the discredited Pizzagate conspiracy, which two years ago led to a man firing shots into a Washington D.C. pizzeria, in search of the children he believed were held as sex slaves by Democratic Party leaders.

He also explained the new Frazzledrip theory in more detail, which he read about in The Washington Post’s report about the still rampant hateful conspiracies being hosted by YouTube. This newer conspiracy claims that Hillary Clinton and longtime aide Huma Abedin sexually assaulted a girl and drank her blood.

The Post said some of the video clips were removed after first appearing in April and had been debunked, but its review of the matter found dozens of videos where the claims were still being discussed. Combined, these videos had been viewed millions of times over the past eight months. In addition, the investigation found that YouTube’s search box would highlight these videos when people typed in terms like “HRC video” or “Frazzle.”

YouTube’s policy doesn’t prevent people from uploading falsehoods, The Post’s report noted.

Raskin asked Pichai about this type of extremist propaganda.

“What is your company policy on that? And are you trying to deal with it?,” he questioned.

Pichai admitted, essentially, that YouTube needed to do better.

“We are constantly undertaking efforts to deal with misinformation. We have clearly stated policies and we have made lots of progress in many of the areas where over the past year – so, for example, in areas like terrorism, child safety, and so on,” said Pichai. “We are looking to do more,” he said.

In terms of the Frazzledrip theory, he said it was more of a recent happening.

“But I’m committed to following up on it and making sure we are evaluating these against our policies,” the CEO promised.

The issue with videos like Frazzledrip is that YouTube’s current policies don’t fully encompass how to handle extremist propaganda. Instead, as The Post also said, its policies focus on videos with hateful, graphic and violent content directed at minorities and other protected groups. Meanwhile, it seeks to allow freedom of speech to others who upload content to its site, despite the disinformation they may spread or their potential to lead to violence.

The balance between free speech and content policies is a delicate matter – and an important one, given YouTube’s power to influence dangerous individuals. In addition to the Pizzagate shooter, the mass shooter who killed 11 people at the Pittsburgh synagogue in October had been watching neo-Nazi propaganda on YouTube, the Post’s report pointed out, in another example.

Asked what YouTube was doing about all this, Pichai didn’t offer specifics.

The CEO instead admitted that YouTube struggles with evaluating videos individually because of the volume of content it sees.

“We do get around 400 hours of video every minute. But it’s our responsibility, I think, to make sure YouTube is a platform for freedom of expression, but it’s responsible and contributes positively to society,” Pichai said. He added that its policies allow it take down videos that “insight harm or hatred or violence.” But conspiracy videos don’t always directly insight violence – they just radicalize individuals, who then sometimes act out violently, as a result.

“It’s an area we acknowledge there’s more work to be done, and we’ll definitely continue doing that,” Pichai said. “But I want to acknowledge there is more work to be done. With our growth comes more responsibility. And we are committed to doing better as we invest more in this area,” he said.