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Morning Media Newsfeed: Crossfire Returns | Newsday Branch Closes | Deen’s Big Interview


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CNN Brings Back Crossfire (TVNewser)
CNN has made it official: Crossfire will be returning to the channel this fall. CNN is poaching S.E. Cupp from MSNBC’s The Cycle to represent the right side of the table, alongside former house speaker and Fox News contributor Newt Gingrich. Obama campaign consultant Stephanie Cutter and former White House advisor Van Jones will represent the left side of the table. The four hosts will also contribute to CNN election and political programming. HuffPost / The Backstory CNN’s soon-to-be relaunched Crossfire will take a page from the original version of show, which aired for 19 years without a live audience. A CNN executive told HuffPost that there will be no live audience when Crossfire returns this fall, a departure from the show’s final three years before being canceled in 2005. FishbowlDC “Few programs in the history of CNN have had the kind of impact on political discourse that Crossfire did — it was a terrific program then, and we believe the time is right to bring it back and do it again,” said Jeff Zucker, president of CNN Worldwide in a release. NYT More than eight years after it was canceled, Crossfire is still one of the best-known cable news programs, but it has also been widely derided, as evidenced by the mixed reactions online to CNN’s announcement on Wednesday morning. Some media critics and commentators have denounced the program for wedging complex arguments into a left-right rubric and promoting political polarization. (In the words of Jon Stewart during his 2004 appearance on the program, “It’s hurting America.” CNN canceled the show the next year.)

Newsday Shuts Down Westchester, N.Y. Branch (TheWrap / MediaAlley)
Newsday‘s year-old Westchester site has been shut down by Cablevision effective immediately, an insider with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap. Cablevision told TheWrap that the closing was “an economic decision.” Though Cablevision will not disclose how many employees were laid off, an individual with knowledge of Newsday‘s plans told TheWrap that the layoffs will affect “a reasonably small” number of people. Another insider estimated the number may be close to 25. The Journal News / LoHud.com The site was launched in the spring of 2012 in an effort to compete with The Journal News and lohud.com in the Lower Hudson Valley. NY Observer “Cablevision Systems Corporation Wednesday announced that it has discontinued Newsday’s digital-only Westchester local news service available in parts of Westchester County, Rockland County and the Hudson Valley,” Cablevision said in a statement. FishbowlNY “We got some bad news [Wednesday]. I’m incredibly proud of the work we did at Newsday Westchester. Enjoyed every moment (except [Wednesday's] meeting).” Ryan Chatelain, Newsday Westchester’s digital news manager, wrote.

Paula Deen Sits Down With Matt Lauer for Uncomfortable Interview (TVNewser)
Wednesday morning, former Food Network chef Paula Deen sat down for an interview with NBC Today anchor Matt Lauer. Deen’s fall from grace began to spiral out of control last week when she decided not to show up for her scheduled interview with Lauer. “What you see is what you get, I’m not an actress, I’m heartbroken,” Deen said. “I is what I is and I’m not changing.” Bloomberg Businessweek If you believe Deen is being undeservedly punished for having made one racist comment years ago, her appearance on Today Wednesday morning will probably have reassured you. And if you believe that Deen is being rightfully punished for being insensitive to race, or worse, her appearance will probably have infuriated you. Deen was defiant and tearful during the 13-minute interview with Lauer and still seemed in shock over her crumbling empire. FishbowlNY Deen was asked if she was a racist and she replied “no.” Then, when Lauer asked her if the “n word” was offensive to black people, she gave a puzzling answer, “I don’t know, I have asked myself that so many times. It’s very distressing for me to go into my kitchens and hear what these young people are calling each other… it’s very distressing for me.” NYT The contrite denial had a desperate underlay that didn’t really help either Deen or her interrogator. Both participants had a lot on the line. Lauer’s interview with the self-forgiving queen of butter and fat was a fresh opportunity to show his worth and boost the ratings. As performers, they both proved to be their own worst enemies. Business Insider The world’s largest retailer, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., said that it wasn’t taking any new orders from Paula Deen Enterprises amid a controversy that the Southern cooking star used racial slurs in the past. Deen’s fans are going ballistic on Wal-Mart’s page on Facebook and it’s just getting started. PRNewser The public does not want Deen to tell us “I is what I is.” Despite the attempt at quaintness, those words are not authentic. We don’t believe them. Those are marketing words designed to perpetuate a caricature — one the public no longer believes is real. Those are not words spoken by an educated adult who wants to be taken seriously.

CNN Lays Off Some Staff in D.C. (TVNewser)
CNN has quietly laid off a handful of staffers in its Washington, D.C. bureau. We hear that most of the departures were senior-level producers and staff, many on specific beats like the White House, national security and the Department of Justice, and who had been with the channel for a long time. The departures are said to be related to a realignment of resources, and re-designing of some of the production roles. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media CNN’s Washington leadership is believed to be rethinking its coverage strategy, including how it assigns editorial staff, sources added, and executives are considering moving away from the traditional beat-assignment model toward a more general assignment approach. A CNN spokesperson declined to comment.

Bloomberg News Reporter Had 18 Ledes Ready for Supreme Court Rulings (The Washington Post / Erik Wemple)
Persistent mistakes by news organizations on big, national stories have spawned a growing consensus in journalism circles — better to be right than first, goes the thinking. People won’t remember who was first to report a Supreme Court decision, says a corollary of this school of thought, but they’ll surely remember who got it wrong. Like CNN and Fox News around this time last year, when the Supreme Court announced its decision on the Affordable Care Act. TVNewser NBC News correspondent Pete Williams, was, as with the last big case, both “first and right.” He was the first correspondent to report the decision, and did so accurately. CBS’ Jan Crawford was actually first (and right) on the Affirmative Action ruling Monday.

Glenn Greenwald, Journalist Who Broke Edward Snowden Story, Was Once Lawyer Sued Over Porn Business (NY Daily News)
The reporter who broke the story about the National Security Agency’s secret surveillance programs has a little secret of his own. Before he was a reporter and commentator for the Guardian newspaper, Glenn Greenwald was a lawyer — and had a part-time job in the porn business. “It was a long time ago,” Greenwald told the Daily News. The Guardian / Comment Is Free “When I made the choice to report aggressively on top-secret NSA programs, I knew that I would inevitably be the target of all sorts of personal attacks and smears,” said Greenwald. “You don’t challenge the most powerful state on earth and expect to do so without being attacked.”

Washington Post Guild: ‘The Post Would Like to Fire You’ (Poynter / MediaWire)
The Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild says a Washington Post proposal for a new agreement with the union “would give managers the power to fire anyone for any reason” and also inserts a “poison pill that would make it even harder for the union to collect dues at the end of the next contract.”

Owners of The Oregonian Gamble on The Newspaper’s Digital Future (Willamette Week)
The death of The Oregonian as you know it came at 9:58 a.m. on June 20. That’s when reporters, editors, photographers and designers who put out the 163-year-old daily newspaper were told to “please proceed” to a large basement conference room. Such meetings at the newspaper — especially on short notice — are unusual at the Oregonian’s headquarters at 1320 SW Broadway. But the staff knew what it was about.

San Francisco Examiner Sues San Francisco Chronicle, Alleging Predatory Ad-Pricing Scheme (San Francisco Examiner)
The parent company of the San Francisco Examiner sued the Hearst Corporation Tuesday, accusing its San Francisco Chronicle of illegally targeting Examiner advertisers with secret, below-cost rates in an attempt to bleed the smaller paper. The San Francisco Newspaper Company, which owns the Examiner, SF Weekly, and the San Francisco Bay Guardian, alleges that the Chronicle offered ad space to advertisers for a fraction of its cost on the condition that the advertisers not buy ads in the Examiner.

In Texas Filibuster, YouTube Stands Up While ’24/7′ News Falls (Time / Tuned In)
Late Tuesday night, the hottest news network in the country may have been the YouTube livestream of the Texas State Senate. Democratic State Sen. Wendy Davis had spent 11 hours on the floor filibustering a bill put forth by Republicans that would effectively force the closure of most of the clinics in the state that provide abortions. You might think that this kind of ticking-clock politics drama would be a magnet for cable news. But the late-night drama exposed a reality of 24/7 cable news: except among the biggest of all news events, it’s really more like 18/7, maybe even 18/5. Medium / Rachel Sklar All of this was unfolding on two screens: the Texas legislature livestream on YouTube, which had been growing steadily all day and by now had hit 180,000-plus; and Twitter, where #standwithwendy was the No. 1 trend in the U.S. As the clock hit 11 p.m. in Texas I checked the third screen — TV — once more, thinking that by now the cable news execs would have gotten wind of the story and broken into regularly-scheduled programming. No such luck.

ESPN’s John Skipper on Keith Olbermann: ‘We Don’t Have a Policy Here That You Can Never Come Back’ (THR)
“I wasn’t here when Keith was here, but he is very talented,” said ESPN president John Skipper. “So I had dinner with Keith — it was delightful and fun. And I would not have had dinner with him if we didn’t sit around and think about whether there was a reason to bring Keith back. I haven’t met with him again, but we don’t have a policy here that you can never come back.”

The Sun Keeps Topless Page 3 Models, Drops ‘News in Briefs’ (Digital Spy)
New editor of The Sun David Dinsmore has said that the newspaper will continue to print pictures of topless models on Page 3. His predecessor Dominic Mohan had come under increasing pressure to stop the practice, including the No More Page Three petition on Change.org and questions at the Leveson inquiry, where he defended it as “a 42-year-old British institution that celebrates natural beauty.”

Is 21-Year-Old Samantha Shannon The Next J.K. Rowling? (Forbes / Mixed Media)
Alexandra Pringle was at her office in London’s Bloomsbury neighborhood in April last year when she got the kind of phone call every book publisher is hoping for these days. Literary agent David Godwin, who for 14 years has shopped Pringle, the top dog at Bloomsbury Publishing, works from prestige authors like historian William Dalrymple and journalist Janine di Giovanni, was offering something outside his usual comfort zone.

Twitter CEO Sees Role for Editors: Weed Through Tweets (USA Today)
On Wednesday, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo urged newsroom editors in the U.S. to embrace the service and news media’s increasingly important role in synthesizing and analyzing millions of tweets that are produced daily. “We think of Twitter as a technology company in the media business,” Costolo said at the annual convention of the American Society of News Editors.

As World Awaits News on Mandela, Tensions Rise Over Media Swarm (NYT)
As a close friend and former fellow inmate of Nelson Mandela, Mac Maharaj has long played a pivotal role in bringing Mandela’s story to the world. Today, as spokesman for the South African presidency, Maharaj is again the conduit for the Mandela tale — possibly its final chapter.

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Mediabistro Chats

Will you tune in to the new ‘Crossfire’? mbist.ro/11Ns20o (via @tvnewser)

twitter Vermeer417 An emphatic NO.

twitter jodmentum that depends. do they get to use paint ball guns and shoot each other?

twitter Doug Millison No. CNN is a waste of time.

twitterAnthony Palmer SE Cupp was underutilized at MSNBC. Oh well. MSNBC’s loss and CNN’s gain.

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