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Posts Tagged ‘ABC News’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Forbes Sells Majority Stake | Kindle Unlimited Unveiled

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Forbes Media Sells Majority Stake to Hong Kong Investor Group (FishbowlNY)
In the past six years, Forbes has expanded its international publishing reach from nine licensed local editions to 36. Content is now consumed in 63 countries, in 21 different languages. Friday, the company solidified its international reach with the announcement that a majority stake has been sold to a group of Asian investors. NYT / DealBook The terms were not disclosed, but the transaction values Forbes Media at $475 million, said a person close to the deal. Forbes’ new controlling shareholders will be Integrated Whale Media Investments, a group that includes the Hong Kong investor Tak Cheung Yam and Wayne Hsieh, the Singaporean co-founder of AsusTek Computer. Forbes The Forbes family will retain a significant ownership stake, will stay actively involved in Forbes Media and will work with the investor group to further increase market share of the existing Forbes Media product lines in media, digital, technology, as well as brand extensions. Upon closing, Elevation Partners will fully exit its investment in Forbes Media. Mashable In a statement, the family and its new majority owners framed the deal as a way to ensure Forbes‘ brand and journalistic operations continue to expand. “Our partners respect our brand and values, and support our longstanding mission of championing entrepreneurship and free market capitalism through quality, independent business journalism,” Steve Forbes said in a statement. Capital New York Forbes Media will remain headquartered in the U.S., and there will be no change at the top — Steve Forbes will continue as chairman and editor-in-chief, and Mike Perlis will remain CEO. The company reported that it made a profit in 2013; the company projected a revenue of $144.6 million for the year, according to a report.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Microsoft to Cut 18,000 Jobs | Aereo Faces Setback

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Microsoft to Lay Off 18,000 Workers, Largest Cuts in History (SocialTimes)
Over the next year, Microsoft is eliminating 18,000 jobs, or as much as 14 percent of its workforce. CEO Satya Nadella wrote a public email to company employees on Thursday saying “every team across Microsoft must find ways to simplify and move faster, more efficiently.” He said that he would give more details on Tuesday, when Microsoft reports its fiscal 2014 results. Deadline Hollywood The layoffs will hit hardest at the Nokia Devices and Services phone handset business, acquired in April. “We are moving now to start reducing the first 13,000 positions, and the vast majority of employees whose jobs will be eliminated will be notified over the next six months,” Nadella said in the email Thursday. Microsoft expects the restructuring to result in as much as $1.6 billion in pre-tax charges over the next four quarters. That will include as much as $800 million for severance and related benefit costs, and up to $800 million in asset-related charges. Variety Microsoft is also getting out of developing original series for its Xbox gaming platform and will close Xbox Entertainment Studios in the coming months. Xbox chief Phil Spencer announced Xbox Entertainment Studios will shutter and that some projects in development and production, including a live-action Halo series, will still be produced. New York Post / Reuters The studio, set up in 2012 under then-CEO Steve Ballmer, said in April it had committed to several projects including Humans, a drama co-produced with U.K. broadcaster Channel 4, and Halo. NYT While Microsoft still makes profits that executives at other companies would be ecstatic to have, it has been beaten on the biggest new trends in tech, including mobile, Internet search and cloud computing. As a result, it is regularly left out of conversations about companies defining the next generation of technology, outflanked and overshadowed by companies like Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Vargas Detained, Released | Abramson Books Two Interviews

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Jose Antonio Vargas Released From Federal Custody in Texas (TVNewser)
Jose Antonio Vargas, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who was the focus of the recent CNN documentary Documented, was released from the custody of U.S. Border Patrol agents Tuesday evening. FishbowlDC Vargas was detained in McAllen, Texas Tuesday, days after speculating that he may be stuck in the border town. On Friday, Vargas wrote an essay for Politico, where he described his visit to a children’s shelter for Central American refugees. FishbowlNY Vargas was leaving the town to go to a screening of his film in Los Angeles when he was arrested. He was brought to a border patrol station for questioning. Supporters and members of the media gathered across the street, and were warned that if they approached the station any closer, they would also be arrested. HuffPost Vargas flew to the border last week to interview and film undocumented immigrants who have fled their home countries in Central America due to escalating violence. A TSA agent at the McAllen-Miller Airport initially cleared Vargas’ Philippines-issued passport when he attempted to board a flight Tuesday morning. He was placed into custody soon after, however, when he couldn’t produce a U.S. visa at the request of a border patrol agent. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Vargas, who won a Pulitzer as part of a Washington Post team in 2008, has become an outspoken advocate for undocumented immigrants after “coming out” as undocumented in a New York Times story in 2011.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: O’Donnell’s Return Official | Emmy Noms Favor CNN, Social TV

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rosie o'donnell the view

Rosie O’Donnell Officially Returning to The View (TVNewser)
Rosie O’Donnell is returning to The View as a co-host in the fall, ABC confirmed via Twitter Thursday. Variety O’Donnell will join moderator Whoopi Goldberg. ABC execs are in the midst of a extensive search for new producers to take the reins of The View as the show prepares to replace panelists Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy, who recently exited the daytime program. THR / The Live Feed O’Donnell, who was a panelist on The View for the 2007-2008 season, left after just one year. O’Donnell had a notably stormy tenure on the show, often fighting with conservative panelist Elisabeth Hasselbeck, who suggested on Fox News on Wednesday that O’Donnell had been plotting her return to the show for “a very, very long time.” HuffPost TMZ reported Tuesday that the former co-host would be returning, claiming that O’Donnell had been in “active talks” with the show. This will be ABC’s first move to put back the pieces after the major overhaul that left Whoopi Goldberg as the show’s only remaining co-host. In June, Shepherd and McCarthy announced that they would be leaving, and ABC implied in a statement that their departures were not voluntary. Barbara Walters, the show’s creator, retired in May and Joy Behar and Hasselbeck both exited the show in 2013. NYT O’Donnell’s name immediately arose as most likely to be the first-named replacement. Her outspoken and often politically oriented commentary helped spark a surge in the show’s ratings. A committed liberal with strong views on numerous topics, she also got into some widely publicized feuds, with Donald Trump and others.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Aereo Plans Survival | Dish Makes Anti-Merger Case to FCC

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Aereo Signals Path to Survival if Classified as Cable System (WSJ)
Aereo Inc., the online video company that was widely expected to go out of business after losing a high-stakes Supreme Court case in June, signaled Wednesday that it sees a path to survival if it is classified in legal terms as a cable system. Mashable Aereo lost its case before the U.S. Supreme Court because a majority of the justices said its resemblance to a cable company meant it had violated copyright laws. Re/code The video streaming company told a U.S. district court in New York Wednesday it now thinks it’s entitled to be licensed as a cable system because of the Supreme Court’s decision. That would allow the company to stay alive although it would have to pay licensing fees in addition to costs to restart its stalled business. Aereo allowed consumers to watch local TV channels over the Internet for a monthly fee of up to $12 until shutting down its service a few weeks ago after the Supreme Court sided with broadcasters. Capital New York The broadcasters responded with their own argument, calling Aereo’s decision “astonishing.” “Whatever Aereo may say about its rationale for raising it now, it is astonishing for Aereo to contend the Supreme Court’s decision automatically transformed Aereo into a ‘cable system’ under Section 111 given its prior statements to this Court and the Supreme Court,” lawyers for the broadcasters wrote. Deadline Hollywood At issue is whether the District Court will lift a stay that allowed Aereo to remain in business while the case made its way to the Supreme Court. Broadcasters want it lifted so they can collect damages from Aereo’s infringement of their copyrights — a two-year period during which they say they “suffered irreparable harm.” Aereo faces additional hurdles even if the District Court agrees with its view. The FCC also might have to agree to define Aereo as a cable operator for it to qualify for the compulsory license — and it would have to be granted by the U.S. Copyright Office.

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Dynamic Female Duo Now at the Helm of SheKnows

LeaAnnLemingPicThe best way to frame FishbowlNY’s phone conversation today with Lea Ann Leming, chief content officer of SheKnows (pictured, right), and newly hired editor-in-chief Amy Boshnack (pictured, below) is as follows. The company has been profitable for the past several years and expects a 30% increase in revenue in 2014.

Also worth mentioning is the fact that Cosmopolitan, a magazine where Boshnack served as managing editor from January 2005 to January 2008, has just revamped its website. When asked about the then-print vs. now-Web differences, Boshnack notes the obvious change in the speed of news and feature cycles. Per comScore, SheKnows currently averages around 40 million monthly uniques.

“A big thing for me is making sure the women reading us are having conversations,” Boshnack explains. “Part of what’s being done here is continuing to make sure that articles being published are about things women are talking about. And to feed that through our comments section, social media.”

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Google Buys Songza | MSNBC Holds Second Place

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Google in Deal for Songza, A Music Playlist Service (NYT)
In a sign of growing consolidation in the digital music business, Google announced on Tuesday that it had bought Songza, a three-year-old app that competes with Pandora and others in making customized playlists of recommended songs. Re/code The New York Post reported in June that the deal could be worth $15 million. Unlike some acquired startups, Songza won’t be shutting down. Its team will be joining Google in New York and helping with contextual recommendation features for Google Play and possibly YouTube down the line. GigaOM Songza offers custom curated playlists based on categories like genre, mood, decade and activity (“Drinking at A Dive Bar,” “’60s International,” etc.) and offers song suggestions based on the time of day and week. The service is free and songs aren’t interrupted by ads. THR The acquisition comes on the heels of Apple’s deal to purchase Beats Electronics and its streaming music service for $3 billion. Amazon also has jumped into the music streaming market with the launch of the Prime Music service, which comes as part of its $99 annual Prime subscription. The move appears to be part of Google’s plans to compete in this increasingly crowded music-streaming space, which is already dominated by Spotify. Variety Google said it plans to use Songza to make its Play Music service more attractive. The Songza purchase also comes as marketers are spending more on online and mobile radio services in the U.S. Ad sales generated $1.65 billion in the U.S. last year, a gain of 26.3 percent, according to digital research group eMarketer. That’s expected to increase another 23 percent to $2 billion this year.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Yahoo! Revives Community | AP to Automate Earnings Stories

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Community Picked Up by Yahoo! (LostRemote)
Greendale Community College is reopening its doors — on Yahoo! The cancelled NBC sitcom Community has been picked up by Yahoo for a 13-episode sixth season. Mashable Until recently, Community’s studio, Sony, had been in talks with Hulu about resurrecting the series following its May cancellation by NBC. NYT Community, which uses a study group at Greendale Community College as the jumping-off point for its self-referential story lines and pop culture obsessions, comes with a core audience of passionate fans. Those fans helped save the show from a previous threat of cancellation two seasons ago. Yahoo! Screen offers reruns of many shows, but Yahoo! has been putting more emphasis on adding original shows. WSJ In April, it announced the launch of 30-minute comedies Other Space and Sin City Saints, which will debut next year. In a time of “cord-cutting,” online services have helped attract subscribers with shows such as Netflix’s Orange Is The New Black and Amazon’s Alpha House. Deadline Hollywood The deal for Community extends Sony TV’s strong track record in bringing back cancelled series. The studio previously brokered a deal to move acclaimed drama Damages to DirecTV after it was cancelled by FX, and found a way to bring back on their original networks cancelled series Drop Dead Diva on Lifetime and Unforgettable on CBS. All three series have gone to air multiple seasons post-cancellation. What wasn’t immediately clear was how Yahoo! plans to make money from continuing the cult show online.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Aereo Suspends Service | The View Loses Two

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Aereo Suspends Streaming TV Service, Weighs Next Steps (Variety)
Following the Supreme Court’s ruling on Wednesday in favor of broadcasters, Aereo announced early Saturday that it was pausing its streaming TV service at 11:30 a.m. ET. “We have decided to pause our operations temporarily as we consult with the court and map out our next steps,” Aereo CEO and founder Chet Kanojia wrote in a letter to subscribers. Deadline Hollywood The Barry Diller-backed company plans to consult with the U.S. District Court in New York, hearing broadcasters’ complaint against it after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 6-3 decision that the service violates station owners’ copyrights when it streams their over-the-air programming without permission. Users will receive a refund for their last paid month. Mediaite Notably, Kanojia calls the move a “pause” rather than a permanent end to operations, though it seems highly unlikely that the company will be able to move forward in any recognizable form following the decision. In an interview with Bloomberg TV earlier this year, he said the company had “no plan” to move forward if the court ruled against it. GigaOM Despite the obvious appeal of an Internet-based mobile TV service that offers a small bundle of channels, the TV industry is reluctant to change its current business model, which is based on selling large packages of channels, many of which consumers never watch. One option for Aereo may be to accept the Supreme Court’s declaration that it is a cable company, and seek a license from the broadcasters, although the economics of this might prove prohibitive. NYT The company had fewer than 500,000 subscribers in about a dozen metropolitan areas. Customers paid $8 to $12 a month to rent one of Aereo’s dime-size antennas that captured over-the-air television signals. They then could stream and record programs from major broadcasters using their mobile phones, tablets, laptops and Internet-connected televisions.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: ABC News Expands to Apple TV | AT&T, DirecTV Sell Merger

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ABC News on Apple TV ‘for Everyone’ (LostRemote)
As of 10 a.m. ET Tuesday morning, ABC News is officially available on Apple TV. TVNewser The new ABC offering features a 24/7 livestream made up of news events and anchored reports, a wide variety of video-on-demand-clips, local content from various ABC News affiliates, content from ABC’s 50-year-old archives, and more. The ABC News Apple TV product also offers an extension of ABC News’ broadcast coverage. TVSpy It also offers a local news section, which showcases top video-on-demand clips from some of the country’s biggest markets. At launch, content from eight ABC-owned stations — including WABC in New York, KABC in Los Angeles, WLS in Chicago, WPVI in Philadelphia, KGO in San Francisco, KTRK in Houston, WTVD in Raleigh and KFSN in Fresno — can be found under the “Local” tab. Variety ABC lacks a cable news channel, unlike broadcast peers Fox and NBC. Now, through Apple TV, ABC News has a 24-hour over-the-top network of sorts available on big-screen TVs. CBS, meanwhile, which also doesn’t have a cable news net, has been exploring a similar digital news service for several years. Capital New York Even when there isn’t live rolling coverage, the app will continue to be updated with segments from ABC News programming, as well as live video feeds from events like speeches or a shot of Earth from the International Space Station. On Apple TV, there are already apps for Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal and Sky News, among others, but ABC marks the biggest bet by far from a U.S. TV news outlet, at least in terms of live coverage and original content. Other channels, like CNN and Fox News, are available for streaming online, but they require viewers “authenticate” that they are pay-TV subscribers. The ABC News app will not require authentication, making it free for everyone.

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