Loaded: Sports video surgeESPN nets big returns on The Masters, find out how many users hopped online. Plus, Circuit City could get snatched up, see what unlikely suitor is looking to buy the consumer electronics retailer. And, running for office in Malayasia? You'd better be...
>> Big numbers for the Masters online. Circuit City could get swallowed up, and Malaysian politicians get ready to blog. It's Monday, April 14th. >> I'm Natali Del Conte [phonetic] and it's time to get loaded. ^M00:00:11 [ Music ] ^M00:00:14 >> ESPN had a very big weekend because of the Masters. >> This was the first year for the network to broadcast the Pro Golf tournament nationally; previously USA had been doing the opening rounds since 1982. Not only did TV ratings go through the roof but the network saw a 117% increase to its website, driven by golf related hits and views of Masters related video online. The ESPN Masters video podcast was also the most downloaded sports podcast on iTunes from Thursday through Saturday. ESPN said that it was pushing harder to get a younger crowd to watch the Masters this year and it looks like it's succeeding. Speaking of large spikes in video related traffic, CBS had a big online win during March Madness. The Inetwork [assumed spelling] says it saw 4.8 million unique visitors online, and increase of 164%. Unfortunately, CBS's TV ratings were down 8% overall. Although, that overtime thriller final game saw a 3.5% [inaudible] from last year's final game. I think CBS can thank Youtube as consumers get use to the ideal of video on the web. Video rental giant Blockbuster says it want to buy Circuit City for around six to eight dollars per share. At first the move might seem a little out of step with Blockbuster's current operations, but when you realize Blockbuster needs to diversify it's business to [inaudible] off low margin rivals like Netflix, the move makes a little more sense. Circuit City has turned around a bit in the last year. The retailer gained three cents a share, compared to last year where it lost three cents a share. Expect more public fighting between the companies [inaudible] Microsoft and Yahoo as the deal continues forward. When it comes to the concept of net neutrality [assumed spelling], most ISP's are very diplomatic, not Virgin Media. The new CEO of the UK's second largest ISP was quite frank when he talked about net neutrality in an interview with the royal television societies television magazine. He admitted that Virgin will do what it pleases when it comes to controlling broadband speeds and said that the company is already in the process of doing deals to speed up traffic to certain media providers. He said, and I quote, this net neutrality thing is a load of bullocks [assumed spelling]. I've never been able to say that word right. >> Bullocks. >> Bullocks. >> On the one hand, it's annoying Virgin Media is shaping their traffic, but on the other hand, at least they're upfront about it, which we can't say for other ISP's, we're looking at you Comcast. You can now share videos or clips of videos from Hulu directly to your favorite social network. This weekend the company added the ability to share Hulu content to social networks like Myspace, Facebook or Digg. Hulu also updated its RSS feeds, so that when you embed a Hulu video on your blog, it will play directly in the RSS reader, so that your reader doesn't have to click away to watch it. Hulu has only been public for three weeks now, but I'm glad to see such a progressive site continue to get more progressive. Last week, we showed you HP's new mini notebook. And now Asus [assumed spelling] is back with an update to the Eee [assumed spelling]. But what exactly makes it different? Dan Ackerman takes a look. >> Dan Ackerman: I'm Dan Ackerman, senior editor at www.cnet.com. And we are here taking a look at the Asus Eee PC window's version, if there's such thing as a cold [assumed spelling] hit in the laptop universe, the Eee PC definitely fits. We at long [inaudible] have a version of the Eee PC with window's XP. And of course, it's still in the same 399 price, and you can get these at Best Buy or anywhere. [Inaudible] wise, this new version of the new Eee PC is identical to the original, same white plastic case. You can also get it in black and some other colors. Same tiny chiclet [assumed spelling] size keys, same full gig [inaudible] hard-drive, so you don't have a lot of hard-drive space, but there is a SD card slot right here on the side. So you can just pop in another four-gig card and double your hard drive size for about fifty bucks. It's got three USB ports and a VGA out. The Macbook Air doesn't have that. And for a very low powered laptop it runs Window's XP pretty smoothly. I'm Dan Ackerman, and that's the Asus's Eee PC Window's XP version. >> Some Malaysian politicians will have to start blogging whether they want to or not. The Secretary General of the United Malay's National organization Party's Youth Wing said that all candidates for National Youth Post must have blogs to introduce themselves and their programs ahead of party elections in December. The Associated Press did not say whether Senior Party Leaders will also have to blog. In the US, it is helpful for our politicians to have blogs, although I always wonder how much they actually write themselves, but I can't imagine actually requiring them to blog, seems a little school mumish [assumed spelling] to me. Those are all your headlines today. >> I'm Natali Del Conte with CNET TV, and you've just been loaded. ^M00:04:35 [ Music ]