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Let’s Make a Deal…

The Young Turks Score $4 Million in Equity Funding

TYTCEnkuygurHeadshotThe most intriguing aspect of today’s TYT Network news is the background of the person at the head of equity fund Roemer, Robinson, Melville & Co.

Buddy Roemer is a former Louisiana Governor and, as such, has delivered to the former Current TV and current Internet gang the group’s first non-crowd-funded cash. From today’s announcement:

“RRM has been looking for two years to find the best platform in New Media in which to invest,” said Roemer. “We believe TYT will be one of the critical players moving forward in a new media world – edgy, unfiltered news commentary at its best. They are a lot like me, sometimes wrong but never in doubt.”

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Report: Bay Area Media Mogul Set to Add Non-Controlling Interest in GLBT Weekly

In case you hadn’t noticed, a fascinating newspaper rivalry has teed up in San Francisco. One that is about to become even more clearly, solidly delineated.

As we recently reported, Hearst has enlisted a couple of major execs  to try and re-invigorate San Francisco Chronicle print-digital operations. The daily will be vying for readers alongside a range of properties controlled by Todd Vogt‘s San Francisco Newspaper Company.

This morning, SF Appeal reporter Max A. Cherney updates a recent announcement that Vogt is about to add a stake in the Bay Area Reporter, a 42-year-old LGBT-focused print weekly. From Cherney’s report:

In a letter of intent, inked in April, Vogt and SFNC CFO Patrick Brown made clear their plan to acquire a minority stake in the Bay Area Reporter – independently of the SFNC.

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Will 500,000 Signatures Put a Dent in Koch Brothers Plans?

Probably not. But there’s no harm in letting prospective newspaper owners know how a vocal segment of the news-consuming public feels about a potential shift in media ownership.

Across the country today, at a dozen Tribune Co.-connected locations including the offices of the LA Times, a petition will be delivered. A total of 500,000+ signatures was gathered by a “Save Our News” coalition that includes Daily Kos, Common Cause, the AFL-CIO, Greenpeace, Free Press and other organizations.

In addition to newspapers like the Times, the Chicago Tribune and Baltimore Sun, protesters will also be visiting TV stations, JP Morgan Chase and the offices of Tribune Co. investor Angelo Gordon. The petition materials include about 100,000 signatures in written form and the rest on USB drives.

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This Just In: Sportswriters Have No Idea Where Dwight Howard Will Be Playing Next Season

There is no shortage of speculative coverage about whether Lakers center Dwight Howard will return to the purple and gold in 2013-14. It’s fuel for the [f]ire known as sports talk radio, Internet blog Web and newspaper sports sections.

Just like Oscar season, just like who might buy the LA Times, the Howard huzzah started immediately and has not stopped. Even though there’s nothing much new and tangible to base it all on. Here’s how Mark Medina contextualized the matter for the Los Angeles Daily News:

A source familiar with Howard’s thinking says he plans to test free agency and has considered the Lakers, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta and Golden State…

The source added Howard’s main concern involves “what team he feels has the best chance to win championships, has the best team and system around him.” The source also stressed Howard has not and will not ask the Lakers to make any moves on his behalf… Either way, Howard can’t officially re-sign until July 10 when a moratorium on NBA business is lifted.

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Former LA Times Staffer Would Welcome Koch Brothers Ownership

There’s the contrarian local view; and then, there’s the really contrarian local view. No other way really to frame former LA Times reporter Joe MathewsZócalo Public Square column arguing in favor of Koch brothers ownership. Mathews’ mother also worked for many years at the LA Times, at one point as an Asia correspondent.

The California editor’s jumping-off point is undeniable – his former employer has become “unthreatening and predictable.” And yes, the arrival of Charles and David Koch, for better or not-worse-than-closure, would change that:

If you doubt that that a polarizing owner can be good for California, let me urge you to visit a certain coastal castle in San Simeon. William Randolph Hearst, who I’m quite sure would endorse the idea of a Koch-owned LA Times, once wisely said, “Whatever begins to be tranquil is gobbled up by something not tranquil…”

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The Nation Stumbles with Rupert Murdoch-Jack the Ripper Headline

We’re guessing that The Nation‘s Eric Alterman did not write the headline for his op ed about LA Times and Tribune Co. newspapers prospective owner Rupert Murdoch.

In the piece, Alterman cites various articulated views about the potential Murdoch-LAT match, including a pair of reporters for the Baltimore Sun and Chicago Tribune who ultimately view Murdoch as a “newsman.” From there, he writes:

True, but by the same logic, Jack the Ripper was a lover of the ladies. Murdoch may be a “newspaper man,” but he is surely not a man who respects honest journalism or even the laws of society as they apply to it (or much else, for that matter).

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HitFix Rescues TV Tattle

Given the popularity of the Oakland-based blog TV Tattle, the only surprise perhaps is that Norman Weiss opted not to resort to a Kickstarter campaign after recenty pulling the plug.

Per an announcement today by HitFix TV critic Alan Sepinwall sub-headlined “Same site, same editor, slightly new location,” TV Tattle is not permanently going to rest alongside the Betamax, TV Guide printed listings and the Sham Wow dude:

Starting today — right now, in fact — you can find TV Tattle at HitFix.com/tvtattle, or through its original URL, TVTattle.com. Nothing changes about the site; Norman has full editorial independence to pick whatever links he likes. We wanted Tattle to continue to exist as it always has.

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Columnist: Koch Brothers Can Start by Getting Rid of LAT ‘Liberal Quitters’

You may not be familiar with the name Cal Thomas (pictured), but the reach of this political columnist is astounding. He is syndicated in more than 500 newspapers across the U.S., including the Chicago Tribune, where – comically? ironically? fittingly? – his op ed for Koch brothers LA Times ownership appears.

Thomas picks up on the Huffington Post article everyone did recently, which reported that when columnist Steve Lopez asked for a show of hands at an awards banquet from paper employees who would quit under the Koch’s, roughly half those in attendance indicated they would. Or, as this columnist sees it, a perfect new beginning:

That should make things easier for the Kochs. They can start by replacing liberal quitters and others whose ideology has turned off conservative readers. They could hire reporters and editors who will try to win back readers and advertisers by providing the type of ideologically balanced coverage they seek.

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LA’s Woven Digital Acquires Guyism.com

The male-centric, occasionally NSFW-ish traffic numbers are solid for this Web enterprise founded in 2009: more than four million monthly uniques. That’s what motivated LA digital media and production company Woven Digital to add New York-based guyism.com to their publishing network, with plans to greatly expand.

There’s a little bit of BuzzFeed in the Guyism blog article format and whole lot of humor overall. For those on the mobile and Web fly, Katie Nolan hosts the daily video feature The Guyism Speed Round.

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An Ominous Show of LAT Staffer Hands

Remember those folks, like Robert Altman, who swore they would move away from the U.S. if George W. Bush was elected President in 2000? Well, thanks to a recent LA Times awards dinner, there’s now a local newspaper equivalent to that defiant promise.

According to a fun little report by Huffington Post LA associate editor Kathleen Miles, who just this past weekend was part of a panel discussing the future of the LAT, there’s a new “I love my *cough* job…” short-form at the paper. It’s spelled *Koch*:

Facing the elephant trunk-on, columnist Steve Lopez from the podium said, “Raise your hand if you would quit if the paper was bought by the Koch brothers.” About half the staff raised their hands.

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