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Veteran rockers Pink Floyd are leading the charge against Pandora Radio, which is under fire for the reportedly meager royalty payments paid to artists and songwriters. We have one such tale of woe in today's recap, along with more sad news from bookseller Barnes & Noble, which appears to be throwing the towel on hardware manufacturing for its NOOK tablets. Read on to find out more!
Bookseller Barnes & Noble announced its year-end financials for fiscal 2013 and most everything was down with $1.3 billion revenue for the fourth quarter, a 7.4 percent decrease. The retailer was quick to note the bottom line was "adversely impacted by NOOK inventory charges," which it plans to address by shifting tablet hardware manufacturing to an as-yet unnamed third party (or parties). Overall device revenue slid 34 percent for the quarter, and while B&N isn't dumping NOOK entirely (the company "intends to continue to build its digital catalog"), the move definitely looks like a wave of the white flag to us.
The Evernote Blog announced the release of Skitch 2.6 for Mac, which finally restores one of the coolest features from the pre-acquisition version: Adjustable canvas. This particularly handy feature allows adding extra room in the margins, either by adding annotations beyond the edge of the image, clicking the plus sign on a particular edge or using the Crop/Resize tool. Skitch also includes more precise shapes, neater annotations, re-editable PNG files and more streamlined screen captures thanks to a new option to turn off advanced features for faster results. The update is now available from the Mac App Store.
Finally out of beta, GoBank announced Tuesday that the mobile app is now available to all, with the ability to open a new account right from the palm of your hand. As part of its nationwide launch, GoBank has partnered with retailers including Barnes & Noble College bookstores and Rite Aid, and will also be prominently featured in the 12th season of Lifetime's Project Runway, which premieres on July 18. While the updated iPhone app is now available, Android users will have to wait just a bit longer.
Pandora Radio is under fire from artists big and small these days, with The Trichordist reporting that one such songwriter was recently paid $16.89 for a whopping 1,159,000 Pandora plays of the song "Low" in the last quarter. David Lowery notes that he only owns 40 percent of that particular song and he does receive a separate royalty as performer, but for comparison, he adds that the same type of Sirius XM play netted him $181 — and this is before Pandora pleads to Congress to get royalty payments reduced even further. Lowery urges fellow artists to post their royalty statements, apparently in an effort to shame Pandora into backing down from its efforts.
Another six weeks, another Firefox release! Mozilla announced Tuesday that Firefox 22 is now available with WebRTC support enabled by default, which brings plugin-free 3D gaming, video calls and file sharing abilities. For Mac users, Firefox 22 also now shows the progress of downloads in the Dock icon and all users can now change the audio and video playback rate of HTML5 media. The release also adds social services management to the Add-Ons Manager, and bring the usual host of bug fixes and other improvements as well.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter