Archives: March 2009
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In another sea change involving New York television, (this one causing a pretty big wave) WNBC sportscaster Len Berman is leaving the station after 24 years.
No mention was made during or after his 6pm sportscast but the NYDaily News’ Richard Huff reports Berman sent a note to staff earlier today: “I’ve had a great run here at WNBC and will miss the talented people I’ve worked with over the years both on and off the air. I’m looking forward to the various media projects I’ll be involved with.”
Huff reports news director Vickie Burns sent an email to staff saying Berman had an “interest in pursuing different opportunities within the local sports arena. To that end, we have mutually agreed that the time is right for Len to take advantage of those opportunities.”
Berman joined WNBC in 1985.
Yesterday, Gawker reported on a “pervasive rumor” that the two main anchors at NBC’s two largest stations, WNBC and KNBC-Los Angeles, may be the next to depart.
Speaking of The New York Times, which is pretty much all we’ve been doing these past few days, have you read Mark Bowden‘s piece in the upcoming Vanity Fair on Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr.? It’s a good long one — despite the fact Sulzberger refused to talk to Cuban, and refused to allow his employees to do so either — and worth the read, particularly since troubles at the Times appear to be reaching a nadir these days. Here’s a taste:
The bad news just keeps coming out the New York Times building. Following yesterday’s report that the City Section may be folded, and last week’s salary rollbacks and layoffs, comes word that the Magazine is also set to suffer some cuts. Per the New York Observer:
The New York Times Magazine is also expected to organize budget cuts, though the paper’s top editors are still in the earliest stages of figuring out how. One senior newsroom staffer said that the Magazine will likely have to cut its page count and adjust its freelance budgets in the near future. Two sources said any changes to the Magazine would not affect its publishing frequency.
Once again, how many more cuts do you think it will take before paid content at the Times becomes a reality?
Crain’s currently has a piece up about The Daily Beast‘s advertising plan, or apparent lack thereof. The article reports that Tina Brown and company have yet to seriously pursue any ad deals — the site has been primarily ad free since it launched — and instead appear to be counting on the deep pockets of Beast backer Barry Diller.
At a panel in January Beast general manager Caroline Marks touched on the topic saying the site was “in a stage of evolving ad and sponsorship, and that “The Beast isn’t an open ended thing — there is a realistic time frame…Barry [Diller] runs businesses we are expected to run ourselves as a business.”
During a talk in February, Brown herself addressed the matter saying the Beast wanted to “create interesting looking advertising models, and places to do it on our site, and we want it to be as strongly and stylishly designed as the rest of it.”
So where do things stand at the moment?
Everything old is new again. At least everything that can figure out how to reinvent itself on the Internet! Behold Life.com. The magazine, which helped to visually define much of the 20th Century, has relaunched online. The site, which is a joint venture between Time Inc. and Getty Images Inc., will combine both companies’ photo collections to “create the most comprehensive photo experience available online.”
Per the release (in full after the jump): “The curated site features both rarely seen and iconic photos from the 1850s through today. The photos are presented with descriptions and categorizations to give users an in-depth photo viewing experience, where they can not only view, but also rate, share and link to images in this expansive collection.”
- “Those of us who have known him for a while have joked that his destiny was to be the conservative on The New York Times editorial page,” said associate editor Marc Ambinder.
- Douthat, who once went skinny-dipping with William F. Buckley, will be facing an audience more likely to share political views with Frank Rich than with the late National Review founder. “I’ve spent most of my life surrounded by liberals,” Douthat said, “so hopefully it won’t be a difficult adjustment.”
We’ve been following Chicago’s Sun-Times Media Group for months now. The paper laid off a number of staffers in January. Then it hired a dude who lived in Dallas to run the company in February. Earlier this month, it promoted two execs. Well, now it’s bankrupt.
Jeremy L. Halbreich, chairman and interim CEO, explained the decision in a statement.
“Over the past several months, the Company has taken several steps to reduce costs and strengthen our organization. However, the significant downturn in the print advertising environment that has affected newspapers across the country has continued to severely impact us. Unfortunately, this deteriorating economic climate, coupled with a significant, pending IRS tax liability dating back to previous management, has led us to today’s difficult action. Importantly, we firmly believe that filing for Chapter 11 protection and exploring the potential sale of assets or new investment in the Company offers us the best opportunity to protect our respected media properties for the long-term.”
The company’s 59 papers will continue to operate. The local news will go on.
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