This afternoon, by way of an entirely unpredictable “second look” from First Look Media, we have an internal item bylined to Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras, Jeremy Scahill and John Cook. It’s all about what led to the shocking exit of Matt Taibbi and while some elements of the narrative are in dispute, the overall picture painted is one of – primarily – a talented rogue journalist having a hard time adapting to the broader intricacies of a managerial position.
According to the item, the tipping point occurred earlier this month. While Taibbi insists the following accusations led him to be told he would be stripped of all managerial responsibilities pending investigation, First Look says that’s not the case:
These simmering problems came to a head this month when a Racket staffer complained to senior management that Taibbi had been verbally abusive and unprofessionally hostile, and that she felt the conduct may have been motivated, at least in part, by her gender. [First Look president John] Temple conducted an investigation, and First Look determined that while none of the alleged conduct rose to the level of legal liability, the grievance bolstered their case that Taibbi should not be the manager of Racket.
After joining Fandango in the fall of 2012, chief correspondent Dave Karger quickly began entertaining the ticket-buying masses with The Frontrunners, a look at actors and artists in the thick of film awards season. The distinguishing feature of the show, one of several Fandango series hosted by Karger, is a handicapping of the trophy hunt through the prism of a single, chosen scene from each guest’s contending film.
When Karger kicks off Season Three of The Frontrunners next month, he will have another stellar guest and a synergistic new broadcast partner. The conversation with Emma Stone (Birdman) will be prominently featured on Fandango, per usual, starting November 12 and highlighted on an edition of NBCUniversal sister franchise Access Hollywood. The plan is to have Karger drop by weekly on the show to frame and share excerpts from The Frontrunners.
“Access Hollywood is a show that I have been very involved with for over a decade,” Karger tells FishbowlNY via telephone, following our attendance of an intimate Tuesday night soiree hosted by Fandango in the Penthouse Bar of LA’s Soho House. ”I’ve appeared as an analyst, a guest and as the Oscars lunch correspondent for the past four years.”
Bloomberg View has added Eli Lake and Josh Rogin as columnists covering national security and international affairs. Both Lake and Rogin were most recently senior correspondents for The Daily Beast and Newsweek.
Prior to The Daily Beast and Newsweek, Lake served as a intelligence reporter for The Washington Times. Rogin served as a staff writer for Foreign Policy and Congressional Quarterly.
“In story after story and scoop after scoop, Eli and Josh have made themselves essential reads in the world of foreign policy and national security,” said David Shipley, Bloomberg View’s senior executive editor, in a statement. “The work they do, a mix of clear-eyed reporting and authoritative analysis, has never been more important — or as valuable.”
Lake and Rogin will be based in Washington and begin November 17.
Last week, we wrote about OK! magazine’s inventive Jennifer Aniston cover story. This week, once again per Gossip Cop, it’s deja voodoo all over again as the magazine is making up more great stories. With yet another noteworthy twist.
It’s one thing to falsely allege that Tom Cruise and Lindsay Lohan hooked up in London. It’s quite another to race towards deadline with that fable after a rep for one of the celebrities has confirmed “Tom & Lindsay: IT’S ON!” is way off. From Gossip Cop associate editor Shari Weiss‘ report:
The entire OK! dating premise was a “lie,” Lohan’s rep told Gossip Cop exclusively. Lohan’s spokesperson even revealed to us that she told the tabloid that its story was wrong and laughable, and yet the magazine still chose to run it.
Welcome back to another edition of FishbowlNY’s Cover Battle. This week we have Details taking on Billboard.
Details features a photo of Brad Pitt wearing an outfit that only he could pull off. Somehow, we view this cover and don’t think, “Why is this guy dressed like an eccentric and perhaps intoxicated 1920s airline baron?” Instead, we think “Silk yellow shirts with giant collars are great looking.” Behold the power of Pitt.
The third quarter was rough for The New York Times, as it posted a net loss of $12.5 million. Total revenue increased barely — by 0.8 percent — from $361.7 million to $364.7 million. Circulation revenues also ticked slightly upward at an increase of 1.3 percent.
The main reason for the decline was all the money the Times had tied up in buyout packages. Print advertising also keeps declining, dropping five percent in the third quarter.
The one bright spot for the Times continues to be its digital subscriptions. The paper added 44,000 during the third quarter, its best quarterly increase in two years. The Times now boasts 875,000 digital-only subscribers.
In the interminable hours, days and months of his Syrian torture and captivity, journalist Theo Padnos hoped and prayed that he would one day report again. For readers of the New York Times Magazine, that miraculous moment has arrived, punctuated by this deceptively straightforward footnote:
Theo Padnos has written for The London Review of Books, The New Republic and other publications. This is his first article for the magazine.
In the piece, titled “My Captivity,” Padnos details his odd relationship with Abu Mariya al-Qahtani, a.k.a. an individual known as the Al Qaeda fighter group’s “Man of Learning.” When Padnos was finally, without much warning, allowed to go free, he was asked improbably for a favor from his captor:
The Man of Learning asked me to approach the truck he was driving. “Hey Bitar,” he said. “Don’t say bad things about us in the press.”
“I’ll just say what’s true,” I said.
Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, just came out as gay in a moving essay he penned for Bloomberg Businessweek. Cook writes that while he has never publicly discussed his sexuality before, he felt now was the right time because he realized doing so could help others:
I don’t consider myself an activist, but I realize how much I’ve benefited from the sacrifice of others. So if hearing that the CEO of Apple is gay can help someone struggling to come to terms with who he or she is, or bring comfort to anyone who feels alone, or inspire people to insist on their equality, then it’s worth the trade-off with my own privacy.
“I’ll admit that this wasn’t an easy choice,” adds Cook. “Privacy remains important to me, and I’d like to hold on to a small amount of it.”
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