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Posts Tagged ‘CNN’

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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CNN Reporter is Sorry for Getting Drunk and Biting People

CNN304x200According to The New York Post, CNN’s senior international correspondent Arwa Damon has a problem with alcohol. Not only did she allegedly get wasted during a visit to the United States Embassy in Baghdad, when two EMTs tried to help her, Damon bit them. The workers are now suing Damon and CNN for $2 million.

Getting drunk and biting people probably goes against CNN company policy, but we’re not quite sure, because the network is denying any knowledge of the lawsuit. “We are not aware of the alleged lawsuit and, therefore, have no comment,” a rep told the Post.

We should add that Damon sent a letter to US Embassy staff apologizing for her behavior:

It’s been an extremely stressful time, I was exhausted, I had not had proper food all day and clearly miscalculated how my body would handle the alcohol consumed … Needless to say, I am utterly mortified and take full responsibility for my actions, which are inexcusable.

Let he who hasn’t pounded too many beers and bit a medical professional cast the first stone.

Morning Media Newsfeed: Tribune Rebrands | Gannett to Split, Buy Cars.com

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Tribune Gets New Name Ahead of Split (TVSpy)
Tribune Company began operating under a new, but similar, name Monday: Tribune Media Company. The rebranding came as the broadcasting and publishing divisions of the 167-year-old company split. TVNewser Tribune Media Company includes Tribune Broadcasting, WGN America, Tribune Studios, Tribune Digital Ventures and Tribune Real Estate. Variety The overhaul comes with a new logo and corporate website. Tribune has labored under the cloud of bankruptcy and plunging ad revenues for years, leading to its fissure into two companies. Tribune’s papers, which include the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, will begin trading Tuesday as a new company, Tribune Publishing. It will be listed under the symbol TPUB on the New York Stock Exchange. It has been saddled with $350 million in debt and faces a cloudy future as revenues and readership of newspapers continue to decline. THR Tribune Media CEO Peter Liguori has said the separation will allow investors to put money into either the broadcast or print assets of Tribune, or both. The spinoff is mindful of the split of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and 21st Century Fox. USA Today Tribune’s shareholders receive a quarter of a share of Tribune Publishing’s common stock for each Tribune share they own. After years of management turmoil and dealing with heavy debt, Tribune, based in Chicago, emerged from a four-year bankruptcy process in early 2013 with the intent to focus on broadcasting. In July 2013, Tribune announced early plans to spin off the publishing unit that would operate on its own without affecting the financial performance of its other, more profitable businesses.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Amazon Adds McGrath to Board | Gifford Pens Today Musical

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Amazon Adds Former MTV CEO Judy McGrath to Board (Re/code)
As Amazon continues its push into becoming a big creator of online TV shows, it’s adding some serious media expertise to its board. The company said on Friday that it had elected longtime former MTV CEO Judy McGrath to its board of directors, effective Oct. 1. Deadline Hollywood As an incentive to stay, she received rights to 2,520 shares convertible at a rate of 840 a year over three years beginning August 2015. Variety Since June 2013, McGrath has been president of Astronauts Wanted: No Experience Necessary, a digital-content joint venture between McGrath and Sony Music Entertainment. She had run Viacom’s MTV Networks from July 2004 until May 2011, and had been part of the startup team that launched the music cabler in 1981. THR McGrath was also appointed to the Leadership Development And Compensation Committee at Amazon, according to a Friday SEC filing. On Friday, Amazon’s shares were trading at $308 each. Amazon launched a streaming music service called Prime Music earlier this year, and it said a week ago it will be spending $100 million on original content this quarter to beef up its Prime Instant Video Service, which competes with Netflix, Hulu and other streaming video services. Forbes The appointment makes McGrath the third woman out of 10 current directors to sit alongside CEO and chairman Jeff Bezos, joining Patricia Stonesifer, CEO of non-profit Martha’s Table, and Jamie Gorelick, former deputy U.S. Attorney General.

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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: NYT Profit Plummets | Twitter Beats Street, Stock Soars

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NYT Profits Plummet 21 Percent (FishbowlNY)
As usual, the New York Times’ earnings report features both good and bad news. While the Times’ digital subscriptions continued to grow, the lack of print ad dollars weighed the paper down. HuffPost / AP The New York Times Co. on Tuesday reported earnings that declined by 54 percent in its second quarter, and missed analysts’ expectations. The New York-based company said net income declined to $9.2 million, or 6 cents per share, from $20.1 million, or 13 cents per share, in the same quarter a year earlier. Financial Times Adjusted operating profit, which strips out some one-time items including retirement costs and depreciation, fell 21 percent to $55.7 million. A fall in advertising sales and stepped-up investment in digital products sapped second-quarter profit at the Times as the publisher forecast flat circulation revenue and further declines in advertising in the coming months. Poynter / MediaWire The Times added 32,000 digital subscribers in the second quarter of 2014. The number was driven by its new products — the NYT Now and NYT Opinion apps and the new Times Premier subscription tier. Paid digital-only subscribers now total 831,000, the company said. Revenue from those subscriptions jumped 13.5 percent, to $41.7 million, from the same period a year ago. Total circulation revenue increased 1.4 percent. Mashable During the quarter, the company’s flagship newspaper fired top editor Jill Abramson and replaced her with former managing editor Dean Baquet. A Times spokesperson said at the time that Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher of the Times and chairman of The New York Times Company, was spurred by a desire to change how the newsroom was managed.

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Rachel Smolkin Named Exec Editor of CNN Politics

Rachel Smolkin is leaving her spot as Politico’s managing editor for news to join CNN as its executive editor for politics. Smolkin had been with Politico since 2011. She previously worked for USA Today and American Journalism Review.

“Rachel will spearhead a new effort to create a digital product in Washington to provide our audiences with more news, more context and more insight about politics than ever before,” wrote CNN’s senior VP, Andrew Morse, in a memo to staffers. “She will work closely with Sam Feist and all of our teams in the DC Bureau to harness the very best reporting from our anchors, programs, reporters and producers.”

Smolkin will join CNN this week.

Michael Wolff: NY Times Should Buy CNN

CNN304x200Michael Wolff has an interesting take on who/what should buy CNN should it ever be up for sale: The New York Times. Well, Wolff wrote that the “most obvious buyer is CBS,” but his runner-up is the Gray Lady.

Before you laugh this off, it’s actually an interesting idea. Wolff says the partnership would benefit both brands. The Times would gain the much needed ad dollars that come with TV. Meanwhile, CNN will finally be seen as a respectable news company if it has to maintain the standards set by the Times.

“In that combination, news, increasingly devolving from platform specificity, takes a major leap forward by creating a quality news company widely distributing its product through all outlets,” explained Wolff. “Television can’t do quality news, but it has great profits. Print still has high news standards, but ever-dwindling profits — so voila!”

Voila! Now let’s make this happen.

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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Morning Media Newsfeed: WaPo Reporter Detained in Iran | Bloomberg Hires Topolsky

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WaPo Reporter, Other Journalists Appear to Have Been Detained in Iran (The Washington Post)
Three American citizens, including the Washington Post’s correspondent in Iran, appear to have been detained this week in Tehran, U.S. officials and the newspaper said Thursday. FishbowlDC Jason Rezaian and his wife, Yeganeh Salehi, are among four individuals — including two unnamed American freelance photojournalists — detained without explanation. Mediaite Salehi, an Iranian citizen, works for a paper out of the United Arab Emirates. The Post does not know why they were detained or by whom; Rezaian’s family has not issued a comment. The State Department said it was aware of the incident but revealed no further information. HuffPost Rezaian has been based in Iran since 2008 and with the Post since 2012. He most recently reported Friday from Vienna on talks over Iran’s nuclear program. Laura Rozen, a reporter with Al Monitor, tweeted that she saw Rezaian on Saturday and that he was planning to fly back that night to Tehran. NYT Hamid Babaei, a spokesman for Iran’s mission to the United Nations, said it, too, was “following up on the case” and would notify reporters when it had any news. The Committee to Protect Journalists, a press freedom advocacy group, called on the Iranian authorities to explain their actions, and to release those it was holding. The U.S. does not have diplomatic relations with Iran. The Swiss government, which has an embassy in Tehran, acts on behalf of American citizens in the country.

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