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Posts Tagged ‘Buzzfeed’

BuzzFeed Attempts to Explain Why 4,000 Posts Were Deleted

BuzzFeedLogoJonah Peretti, BuzzFeed’s CEO, has a non-explanation explanation for why his site secretly deleted more than 4,000 posts. In an interview with Slate, Peretti admitted that “We probably could have communicated better, or handled it better,” but the reason they didn’t is because BuzzFeed used to be a tech company, and now it’s a media company.

Peretti said that BuzzFeed became a media company when it hired Ben Smith, and that the posts were deleted because they were “technically broken, not sourced to our current standards, not worth improving or saving because the content isn’t very good.”

Another way of saying this is “We deleted the posts once we realized someone would notice the rampant plagiarism that we used to become a popular site.” If you’re a media company, you don’t just get to delete articles whenever you want.

Why did it take until 2014 to get rid of these “broken” articles, when Smith was hired in 2011? Also, BuzzFeed just got $50 million from an investor who said “We think of BuzzFeed as more of a technology company.” Peretti might want to inform them that they’re a media company now. Or is his description of BuzzFeed dependent on who’s asking?

BuzzFeed Deleted More Than 4,000 Posts

BuzzFeedLogoThe editors of BuzzFeed have some (more) explaining to do. According to Gawker, more than 4,000 posts were deleted from the site in late April, which is — at the very least — odd. Especially for a site that keeps telling everyone how great it is.

As of now, BuzzFeed’s editor-in-chief, Ben Smith, has refused to comment on the situation. He has however, tweeted a link to the BuzzFeed post “29 gloriously hilarious ways to use the poop emoji” multiple times this morning. Good to know Smith has his priorities in order.

Given that this comes after the site had to fire its viral politics editor Benny Johnson for 40 instances of plagiarism, one has to wonder: Were all those posts deleted because they also featured plagiarism?

In the past, BuzzFeed has said that posts are deleted from the site when they don’t meet the site’s editorial standards. Is that what happened here? Who knows! No one from BuzzFeed will explain themselves.

If you ask us, as time goes by, “BuzzFeed’s editorial standards” sounds more and more like an oxymoron.

Morning Media Newsfeed: Chopper Crash Injures NYT Reporter | Tribune Media Profits Up

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NYT Correspondent Injured in Iraq Helicopter Crash (TVNewser)
New York Times reporter Alissa Rubin was injured when the relief helicopter she was traveling in crashed Tuesday, killing the pilot. The helicopter was on a mission to aid Yazidi refugees in Iraq. FishbowlNY According to crash survivors, the helicopter went down shortly after takeoff. The cause of the incident has yet to be confirmed. NYT Rubin, 56, the Times’ Paris bureau chief and a longtime war correspondent, apparently suffered a concussion, at least one broken wrist and possibly some broken ribs but was conscious. Adam Ferguson, 35, a freelance photographer working for the Times who was accompanying Rubin, said via cellphone text that he suffered a sore jaw and some minor bumps. HuffPost Rubin has a long history of war reporting. She was the bureau chief for the Times in both Baghdad and Kabul before transferring to Paris. Time Iraqi parliamentarian Vian Dakhil was among the survivors of the crash. Dakhil garnered international attention for her impassioned pleas on the floor of Iraq’s parliament to deliver aide to tens of thousands of Yazidis, a religious minority that fled into the mountains as ISIS fighters advanced northward into the Kurdish region of Iraq. A Kurdish official told the Times that the cause of the crash appeared to have been an accident and that no ISIS fighters were seen in the area at the time.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Todd Eyed for MTP | LA Times Names Publisher, CEO

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Meet The Press Reportedly Plans to Announce New Moderator Soon, Chuck Todd The Favorite (Politico / Playbook)
Chuck Todd, a political obsessive and rabid sports fan, is the likely successor to David Gregory as moderator of Meet The Press, with the change expected to be announced in coming weeks, according to top political sources. TVNewser Meet The Press has slipped to third among the Sunday public affairs shows. Todd is currently NBC’s chief White House correspondent and political director, as well as the anchor of the 9 a.m. Daily Rundown on MSNBC. FishbowlDC The New York Post’s Page Six first reported in late July that Gregory may soon be replaced. The Daily Beast’s Lloyd Grove later wrote in a follow-up piece that, “In multiple conversations that I had with people inside and outside NBC after the item appeared, it was taken as a given that Gregory is toast.” TVNewser Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace appeared on MediaBuzz to give his thoughts on the rumors and the influence of Sunday shows today. “I think it’s lousy,” Wallace said about how NBC News is treating Gregory amid rumors of his imminent ousting. FishbowlDC “I think they either ought to say he’s our guy, we’re sticking by him, or they ought to get rid of him, but they shouldn’t put him in this limbo,” said Wallace.

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BuzzFeed Has Big Plans

BuzzFeed just closed a $50 million investment from venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, so you know what that means — big plans! This is because you can’t get that much money from an investor and reply, “Right, well, thanks for this, but we’re just going to keep doing what we’re doing.”

In an announcement, the site said it has its sights set on Hollywood. BuzzFeed Video is now BuzzFeed Motion Pictures. The video arm already produces Vines and short films, but will now seek to create full-length movies in conjunction with other major studios. Expect What Type of Sea Algae Are You?, starring Matt Damon, to premiere in 2018.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Murdoch Withdraws Time Warner Bid | New Leaker Emerges

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After Pushback, Murdoch Abandons Fox’s Pursuit of Time Warner (NYT / DealBook)
At 4:07 p.m. Tuesday, the chief executive of Time Warner Inc., Jeffrey L. Bewkes, received an unexpected email. “On behalf of our board and senior management team, I am writing to inform you that we are withdrawing our offer to acquire Time Warner, effective immediately. Sincerely, Rupert Murdoch.” A hand-delivered letter bearing the same message arrived soon after. TVNewser In short, Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox withdrew its bid for Time Warner, CNN’s parent company. FishbowlNY Early last month, word leaked that Murdoch’s bid of $80 billion was rejected, which raised speculation that he’d try everything in his power to make it happen. Instead, the opposite has occurred. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Subsequent reports speculated that Murdoch, dogged in his pursuit of an acquisition, would consider upping the offer by as much as $13.5 billion. Had such a deal gone through, it would have merged the country’s top-two cable providers, giving Murdoch control of several top-rated cable networks, including TNT, Fox News, TBS and Cartoon Network. WSJ Fox cited both Time Warner’s unwillingness to “engage with us” and a sharp drop in Fox’s stock price which made a deal “unattractive to Fox shareholders.” Fox’s stock had fallen about 11 percent since news broke last month that it had made a takeover offer for Time Warner, valued at $85 a share.

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Greg Coleman Named President of BuzzFeed

BuzzFeedLogoGreg Coleman, former president of The Huffington Post, has been named the new president of BuzzFeed. Coleman most recently served as president of the advertising tech company Criteo. Coleman will also hold a seat on BuzzFeed’s board.

“Social, content-driven advertising has really come of age in the last three years, and Greg joining us validates that enormous shift,” said Jonah Peretti, BuzzFeed’s founder and CEO, in a statement. “Greg helped transform industries at Huffington Post and Criteo and now will scale social advertising globally as it becomes an essential part of every major brand’s marketing strategy.”

Coleman is succeeding Jon Steinberg, who recently joined Mail Online.

Morning Media Newsfeed: NewsHour Names Just EP | Discovery, Sony Make Gains

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PBS NewsHour Names ABC’s Sara Just Executive Producer (FishbowlDC)
PBS NewsHour announced Thursday that 25-plus year ABC News-er Sara Just has been tapped to serve as the program’s executive producer and SVP of NewsHour Productions LLC. Variety Just will oversee the daily operations of the nightly news program, co-anchored by Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff. Deadline Hollywood Just, who has been ABC News’ deputy Washington Bureau chief since April, will join NewsHour on Sept. 2, succeeding Linda Winslow, who is retiring. Just’s hire comes on the heels of WETA taking over NewsHour from MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, the company named after former anchors Robert MacNeil and Jim Lehrer, on July 1. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Before becoming deputy Washington bureau chief at ABC, Just was senior Washington producer for Good Morning America and had spent 17 years at Ted Koppel’s Nightline. ABC News president James Goldston said in a memo to staff Just was integral to the innovation of their digital political coverage. NYT NewsHour has struggled in recent years to raise enough funds to meet its annual budget of $25 million to $30 million, although WETA officials said at the time of the ownership transfer they were confident they could find the money. With money tight, the program has not been able to do as much field reporting as some critics would like. Just said that she would better understand the program’s budget challenges once she started, but added “I think reporting from the field is essential,” when paired with insightful analysis.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: BuzzFeed Editor Fired for Plagiarism | Palin Launches Channel

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BuzzFeed Fires Staffer for 40 Instances of Plagiarism (FishbowlNY)
It looks like the magic number was 40. BuzzFeed has decided to fire its viral politics editor, Benny Johnson, after finding that many instances of plagiarism in his work. FishbowlDC A note to editorial staff sent Friday evening from BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith announced that the website has parted ways with Johnson after identifying “40 instances of sentences or phrases copied, word for word, from other sites, many of them inappropriate sources in the first place.” Capital New York Earlier last week, a pair of Twitter users called into question several of Johnson’s posts that had taken phrases and sentences from sources including About.com and National Review. Smith said Friday that editors were reviewing Johnson’s work. Poynter / MediaWire In his note to readers, Smith wrote that the plagiarism constituted “an act of disrespect to readers” and that Johnson’s editors were “deeply embarrassed and sorry” for misleading BuzzFeed’s audience. HuffPost Smith said BuzzFeed would correct every post where plagiarism was found and add editor’s notes to them. Johnson was previously with Glenn Beck’s The Blaze and has also written for Breitbart News.

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BuzzFeed Fires Staffer for 40 Instances of Plagiarism

BuzzFeedLogoIt looks like the magic number was 40. BuzzFeed has decided to fire its viral politics editor, Benny Johnson, after finding that many instances of plagiarism in his work.

In a note to readers, BuzzFeed’s editor Ben Smith — who previously brushed off three examples of Johnson’s plagiarism — said the buck stopped with him and the site’s other editors:

We owe you, our readers, an apology. This plagiarism is a breach of our fundamental responsibility to be honest with you — in this case, about who wrote the words on our site. Plagiarism, much less copying unchecked facts from Wikipedia or other sources, is an act of disrespect to the reader. We are deeply embarrassed and sorry to have misled you. Benny’s editors — I, Katherine Miller, John Stanton, Shani Hilton, and McKay Coppins — bear real responsibility.

In a memo provided to FishbowlNY by BuzzFeed, Smith elaborated on the situation. You can read it below.

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