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Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios
Screen time for children ages 0-2 more than doubled from 1997 to 2014, according to new research published in the science journal JAMA Pediatrics.
The twist: The study found that, despite the advent of new types of devices in that time span, like iPads and smartphones, most of the uptick came from screen time spent on television. In total, TV consumption has more than doubled in percentage points of overall consumption of screen time from 1997 to 2014.
Why it matters: This means that the increase in screen time might not be the result of an onslaught of new technologies, but rather caused by changes in parental interactions because of work schedules or other socio-economic factors.
By the numbers: In 1997, daily screen time averaged 1.32 hours for children aged 0 to 2 years and 2.47 hours for children aged 3 to 5 years. By 2014, total screen time among children aged 0 to 2 years had risen to 3.05 hours per day. In comparison with other devices, screen time allocated to television comes in highest.
Yes, but: Dylan Collins, CEO of children's tech company SuperAwesome, emails that this study stopped measuring viewing habits after a pivotal switch occurred in the media diets of young children.
The big picture: While there haven't been many long-term studies on the impact of screen time on children's health to date, there has been research that suggests that prolonged screen time can increase risks of obesity in children and can be linked to poorer performance on developmental screening tests later in childhood.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Nearly $1 billion has been committed to saving local news in America over the next several years, as the country grapples with the consequences of less local coverage and accountability.
Why it matters: Despite valiant efforts, there's still no real business model for local news to continue to operate the way it has been for decades. Many of these donations, however, are being used to fund the research and development of sustainable business models for local news.
Go deeper: Read my full piece here.
Illustration: SOPA Images/Contributor, Getty Images
One of the world’s largest private equity firms is moving in on the local media landscape, placing billion-dollar bets on some of the biggest local TV franchises in the U.S.
Why it matters: Apollo Global Management's local media spree could one day give the firm a significant local TV power. Bloomberg reports that if Apollo's next big deal with Nexstar Media pans out, it would reach almost a quarter of U.S. households with its TV stations, based on Bloomberg Intelligence estimates.
Driving the news: Apollo announced last week that it will purchase a majority stake in 14 of Cox Media Group’s television stations and its integrated media operations in Ohio. Cox will keep a minority ownership. The deal is reportedly worth roughly $3 billion.
The big picture: An employee Q&A document obtained by Axios related to its recent takeover of Cox says that Apollo is planning "to build a larger media company," starting with Cox Media, that will be headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, where Cox is currently headquartered.
Apollo is reportedly working on more deals to acquire other local television stations, including Nexstar, and could be aiming to acquire other Cox assets in the future.
Read more on why Apollo needs scale here.
Despite having less than half of Facebook's monthly active users (MAUs), Instagram's top 10 accounts generate 5 times more interactions than Facebook's most-engaged accounts, according to data from CrowdTangle between Nov. 17–Feb. 17, Axios' Neal Rothschild reports.
Why it matters: The numbers illustrate the level of engagement Instagram has captured. The disadvantage in MAUs can be overcome if users come to the platform more times in a day, spend more time when on the app and engage more while there.
Between the lines: The type of accounts filling out the top 10 of each platform reflect the ethos of that platform and what sort of media presentation get incentivized.
Go deeper: Read Neal's piece here.
Illustration: Caresse Haaser, Sarah Grillo/Axios
A withering report from a U.K. parliamentary committee that calls out Facebook and other tech platforms as "digital gangsters" is adding new heat to a European campaign against U.S.-based tech giants.
Why it matters: U.S. regulators have fewer powers at their disposal and have moved more slowly than their European counterparts, leaving Europe to frame the debate over tech firms' privacy controversies, misinformation problems, and potential antitrust violations.
Yes, but: Results from an ongoing Federal Trade Commission investigation could show that U.S. regulators are starting to follow Europe's lead. The Washington Post reports that Facebook is weighing a "multibillion" dollar fine to settle with the FTC in its investigation into against Facebook's privacy practices.
The big picture: New measures to clamp down on Big Tech are seeing the light of day in the E.U., and are inching closer to reality. In the past week:
Be smart: A culture of privacy and market regulation is driving Europe to take the lead on many of the issues surrounding Big Tech, like data security, fake news, content liability, competition, etc. The U.S., led currently by a conservative administration with a priority to deregulate industry, has not made policing tech companies as big of a priority.
Illustration: Vox Media
Vox Media is expanding its partnership with Stitcher, one of the biggest end-to-end podcast companies, to produce a new technology news podcast from Recode as part of a multimillion dollar deal.
Why it matters: It's part of Vox's Media bigger effort to grow a standalone podcast network and business, as opposed to producing one-off podcasts for distribution.
About the show: The new show, which has yet to be named, will focus on the business of technology from a broader lens.
Details: The show will feature a to-be-hired host, and will be produced by a new team with backing and support from Stitcher. The show will air three times weekly beginning this summer, with each episode slated to run 25–30 minutes.
By the numbers: Vox Media’s revenue from podcast advertising tripled year over year and is on pace to more than double again this year, according to Vox Media President Marty Moe.
Go deeper: Read my full piece here.
As iPhone sales have tapered off, Apple has been increasing its focus on growing its services business.
Why it matters: What started out as cloud storage and extended support contracts, Apples' "services" revenue sector has expanded to include Apple Music and will soon likely expand further to news, video and gaming.
What's next: The Wall Street journal reports that the tech giant is "shaking up leadership and reordering priorities across its services, artificial intelligence, hardware and retail divisions as it works to reduce the company’s reliance on iPhone sales."
Read more of the full piece by Axios' Ina Fried and me.
Credit: The New York Times
The New York Times is running its first out-of-home marketing campaign for its Crossword puzzle app in Seattle and Boston through the end of March.
Why it matters: When it comes to bolstering its overall subscription count, the Times leans heavily on its crossword puzzle app and its cooking app.
Details: The campaign’s central message is, “Wordplay, every day,” encouraging players to download the NYT Crossword app and play its "mini puzzle."
Go deeper: Read the full story here.
Photo: Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images
American parents say that their kids are picking up British accents from watching Nickelodeon show “Peppa Pig,” per Business Insider.
The twist: Millennial motherhood blog Romper interviewed Emma Byrne, an AI scientist that studies neural networks, who says kids are adopting the language in part because they know the unusualness of it gets their parents' attention.