New brandmark for CIRAThe Canadian Internet Registration Authority appears set to adopt a new brandmark that would be used by registrars selling .ca domain names.  An application for a trademark on the graphic was filed on January 20. Disney vet sets up shop in Toronto with ex-Playdium CEOA company called TimePlay Entertainment Corp. has applied for a trademark on the term "Timeplay". Few details about the company are available, and a person reached by phone at a number available on the company’s web site would confirm only that the company is new. The company is headed by Jon Hussman, president/CEO, who is a former CEO of Toronto entertainment company Playdium, and Jon Snoddy, chief creative officer. Snoddy was formerly director of Walt Disney Imagineering, developing virtual reality for Disney’s theme parks. He then went to Dreamworks Studios where he worked on the Sega Dreamworks arcades. The company, according to its web site at, is selling a "turnkey system for playing games and other interactive experiences on movie theaters on the big screen." The system uses a wireless controller, rack mounted PCs, and DSL lines to connect a "central content distribution center" to widescreen projection systems. According to the web site: "Much of the TimePlay content will be movie based. The company will work with major Hollywood studios to create ‘Play-the-Movie’ versions of popular films." TimePlay appears to be funded by Mark Rider’s The Rider Group Inc., which has also incubated Hip Interactive Inc. and GlobalLive Communications Inc. Rider serves TimePlay as chair. A note on the web site reads, "TimePlay continues to be well funded by its partners. There will be investment opportunities available as TimePlay expands its business." The company is located on Simcoe Street in Toronto, and maintains a mailing address, at least, in the Universal City Plaza, Universal City CA. New Media Research Networks Fund guidelines postedCanadian Heritage’s New Media Research Networks Fund has posted revised guidelines for funding for the 2004-05 fiscal year to its web site. The fund is a component of the Canadian Culture Online Program, and is intended to foster new media research and ensure a Canadian presence in new media development and innovation (CNM, Aug. 21/02). Expressions of interest for the next round of funding are due March 1, and a full application will be solicited from among those applicants by the fund’s supervisors. The fund guidelines can be found here. Perfect10 files suits against credit card companiesAdult content provider Perfect10 magazine is suing Visa, MasterCard and other financial institutions for knowingly abetting the sale of copyright infringing porn pics and clips over the Internet. The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for Northern California. In April 2002, Canadian adult content providers cheered a victory by Perfect10 over the Adult Check network and Cybernet Ventures Inc. on the same grounds (CNM, May 1/02). At the time, publisher Norman Zadeh told CNM that the successful suit would be the first of many. IAB Canada, York University create marketing certificateThe Interactive Advertising Bureau of Canada and the Atkinson Faculty of York University have together launched a new certificate in Internet marketing and advertising. The program is being sponsored by The Globe and Mail, which will provide training facilities in downtown Toronto. Classes will start in the fall of 2004 and further sponsorship announcements are expected over the coming months. Loto-Québec R&D arm hires Frima Studio for online gameIngenio, the research and development arm of Loto-Québec, has hired Frima Studio to develop a multimedia lottery, Détective privé. The partner choice comes after a public RFP. Frima is known for its Jack Carter web game, developed for la Société Radio-Canada. Détective privé will likely take seven people working full time to produce in April. ilasallecampus receives Quebec ministerial accreditationilasallecampus, the virtual training campus of the Collège LaSalle, has received accreditation from the Quebec Ministry of Education for its multimedia training program. Alliance numériQC continues to push for education measuresThe Alliance numériQC continues to push the Quebec government to mandate use of homegrown educational content in the province’s classrooms. According to a media release, the Alliance met on January 28 with education minister Pierre Reid to discuss its position. The lobby group again pushed for measures it outlined in a proposal made in April 2002 (CNM, Apr. 19/02). Proposed measures include funding for the creation of educational content, as well as a requirement for schools to buy Quebec-developed titles. Sarbakan title FireChild picked up by AOL for broadbandAmerica Online has launched a new 3D online action game called FireChild developed by Quebec City-based Sarbakan. The game has been aimed at users of the ISP’s Red service, which gives teens their own welcome page, toolbar and buddy list. The service is available to teens using a parentally controlled young or mature teens account on either dial-up or through AOL’s broadband service. The game itself is meant to be played by broadband users, and is touted as "a console-quality, story-driven online game." New Media SLAM starts next week in VancouverThe New Media SLAM will be held Feb. 13-14 in Vancouver. The event gives teams of new media producers, technicians and artists 48 hours to create multimedia projects. The event is presented by Flourish Media, and sponsored by New Media BC. More information is available at www.newmediaSLAM.com. ZIM to acquire U.K. SMS firm EPL CommunicationsMichael Cowpland-led ZIM Corp. has agreed to acquire U.K.-based EPL Communications in a combined cash/share deal worth around US$3.5 million. Both firms are in the business of delivering short message service (SMS) campaigns. The deal is expected to close in mid-February. TELUS appears poised to offer Moon Taxi radio channelsTELUS Corp. appears set to begin giving its Internet service subscribers access to the streaming radio services from Moon Taxi Media. On January 27, the company filed for a trademark for the term "PURERADIO". The application notes that the trademark would be used in connection with "telecommunications services, namely access to radio music channels offered over the Internet." CNM reported in October that the two companies would offer music downloads using Moontaxi’s Puretracks service (CNM, Oct. 22/03), and the trademark application would seem to indicate an expansion of that partnership. Moon Taxi has offered streaming radio for several years across a variety of genres including jazz, classical, world music and pop (CNM, Feb. 22/02). IFPI says corner turned on offering music downloadsThe International Federation of the Phonographic Industries (IFPI) says in a new report that the music industry has begun to successfully fight piracy with legal online services. The report notes that 2003 saw the development of a critical mass of legal services. The study notes that the number of Americans who paid for downloads doubled from 8% to 16% over the first half of 2003, and that the total catalog of tracks available to U.S. customers stands somewhere between 400,000 and 500,000 tracks. The IFPI says the number of services now offering paid downloads is encouraging, noting the iTunes, RealPlayer and Wal-Mart offerings in particular. The study also singles out Puretracks as a Canadian player. The IFPI report also predicts that mobile devices will be an important part of future revenue growth for the music industry. It writes: "Strong evidence emerged in 2003 that mobile networks and devices could become a key distribution platform for music over the next few years. The majority of the activity in the sector so far has been promotional partnerships between mobile operators and music companies, allowing mobile subscribers to stream and sample new music as well as offering personalised artist-related material via the handset. The ring tones and mobile entertainment market first emerged in Japan and South Korea, where growth has been rapid." Wi-Fi technology, third-generation mobile devices and the development of wireless digital rights management techniques are all expected to fuel a boom, says the IFPI.