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Posts Tagged ‘Comcast’

Morning Media Newsfeed: AMC Buys Stake in BBC America | CNN Announces High Profits

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AMC Networks Buys 49.9 Percent Stake in BBC America (TVNewser)
AMC Networks has agreed to purchase a 49.9 percent stake in BBC America from BBC Worldwide for $200 million. AMC Networks will look for greater distribution for BBC World News in the U.S. B&C BBC Worldwide will retain a 50.1 percent equity stake in the cable channel, while AMC Networks will have operational control of BBCA, including affiliate and advertising sales, though it will still be consistent with BBC’s editorial standards and policies. THR The cable networks company and the commercial arm of U.K. public broadcaster BBC announced the deal Thursday after reports of their talks first emerged over the summer. The channel airs such BBC favorites as Doctor Who, Sherlock, Top Gear and Planet Earth. AMC Networks operates the AMC, Sundance, WE tv and IFC channels, and can now add the so-far independent BBC America when it negotiates carriage fees, giving both partners increased leverage in talks with pay-TV operators. WSJ The deal comes as the biggest pay-TV distributors are consolidating, prompting analyst speculation that content players will also have to seek greater scale. Variety Executives at both companies portrayed the arrangement as one borne out of a desire to gain greater reach for premium content that attracts high-income audiences. The two sides have worked together in the recent past. The two have collaborated on series including Top of The Lake and The Honourable Woman as well as the coming program One Child. AMC Networks and BBC Television have agreed to continue to jointly pursue a number of content investment opportunities on a range of future projects, both through BBC America and other AMC Networks channels. BBC America is to be managed as a standalone asset within AMC’s portfolio.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Snyderman Back to NBC | World News Skips Midterm Coverage

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Despite Criticism, Dr. Nancy Snyderman Will Return to NBC News (TVNewser)
NBC News chief medical correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman will return to work, but it won’t be until next month. NBC News president Deborah Turness informed the network’s employees of the decision in an internal email Wednesday evening. CNNMoney The timing is noteworthy because Snyderman’s apparent violation of a voluntary quarantine scared some members of her New Jersey community and stoked a major controversy earlier this month. Questions about her credibility have lingered and she has not addressed those questions publicly. The Washington Post / Erik Wemple In the memo, Turness celebrates the recovery of freelance cameraman Ashoka Mukpo and the impending end of the 21-day quarantine binding on Snyderman and NBC News crew members who reported several weeks ago from Liberia. “While in Liberia Dr. Nancy and her team delivered first class, first-hand reporting from the front lines of this tragic and monumental story,” writes Turness. While with Snyderman and co. in Africa, Mukpo contracted the Ebola virus and was flown to a Nebraska hospital. Deadline Hollywood Tuesday, Mukpo, officially declared Ebola-free by experts at the Nebraska Medical Center bio-containment unit, celebrated by attempting to rescue Snyderman from the career-nuking situation she created when she violated the voluntary quarantine she’d agreed to, on-air, tweeting “Be nice to her plz.” TVNewser Expect to see Mukpo on NBC News. The network is already promoting “exclusive interviews” with him.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Rowe Sets Records for CNN | Morgan Slams Cooper, AC 360

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Mike Rowe Makes CNN History With Debut of Somebody’s Gotta Do It (TVNewser)
According to Nielsen Fast National Data, Mike Rowe‘s Somebody’s Gotta Do It is CNN Original Series’ best premiere ever in the adults 25-54 demo, averaging 507,000 viewers Wednesday night, coming in second to The Kelly File, which drew 544,000. THR / The Live Feed Somebody’s Gotta Do It marked a 255 percent advantage over MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show – which hit an all-time low during the third quarter. The series also averaged 943,000 total viewers, besting MSNBC by 25 percent. NYT Somebody’s Gotta Do It easily topped CNN‘s previous best result in its recent introduction of original series. The Hunt With John Walsh pulled in 330,000 viewers in the 25-54 group with its premiere in July. Deadline Hollywood Rowe’s opening represented a 152 percent hike in the news demo compared with the time slot’s average the prior four Wednesdays (201,000), and a 77 percent jump in overall crowd (534,000). CNNMoney Shows like Rowe’s — what CNN calls “original series,” distinguishing from newscasts or talk shows — cost more to produce than newscasts do, but tend to be more popular and can be replayed many times. They are a centerpiece of CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker’s strategy to improve the ratings performance of the company’s American cable channel. One of CNN’s first originals, Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, opened to 282,000 in the same age demographic back in April 2013.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Leno Set to Launch CNBC Show | NBC Courted Stewart for MTP

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Jay Leno Nears Deal to Launch CNBC Show (THR / The Live Feed)
Jay Leno is lining up his first regular television hosting gig since leaving The Tonight Show in February, and he’s staying in the NBCUniversal family. TVNewser Leno’s new show would air on CNBC in primetime and focus on his longtime love of cars. WSJ / CMO Today A CNBC spokesperson declined to comment. Both NBC and CNBC are units of Comcast Corp. Since he stepped down from The Tonight Show, he has continued to work as a stand-up comic. He is known for his love of automobiles and has a large collection of rare and classic cars. NYT No other details have been released pending completion of the contract, though the executives confirmed the show would not be comedy-based. Leno has been a regular presence on NBC.com with a motor-vehicle-obsessed show called Jay Leno’s Garage. Deadline Hollywood The news comes as the cable business network comes off its lowest-rated quarter of the year in primetime and the lowest-rated quarter in its history in the demo for the business day, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. CNBC has been looking to broaden its primetime slate with reality TV formats. To date, its most successful such bid has been its reruns of ABC’s Mark Burnett-produced Shark Tank.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Baquet Changes NYT Masthead | Comcast Responds to Merger Critics

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Big Changes to NYT Masthead (FishbowlNY)
Dean Baquet, the New York Times’ executive editor, has officially revamped the paper’s masthead. Gone is the “managing editor” title; it’s being replaced by four “deputy executive editors,” who “have already proven they can run stories that take on big institutions, who have covered a world of war and proven they can lead with humanity.” NYT They are Susan Chira, Janet Elder, Matthew Purdy and Ian Fisher. A fifth editor, Tom Bodkin, will be given the title of creative director, a position equal to the four deputy executive editors. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Through these changes Baquet hopes to make the relationship between the Times’ digital and print sides more fluid. “I anticipate people moving on and off the masthead as our needs evolve,” he wrote in a memo to staff Wednesday, “and it is important that these moves not be seen as measures of who is up and who is down, but rather as appointments aimed at keeping our journalism and our entire operation as vibrant as possible.” Capital New York The appointments reflect a push for better coordination and cooperation between departments as the Times works on pushing out its journalism to digital readers more effectively. Other recent appointments along these lines include Arthur Gregg Sulzberger as senior editor for strategy, Alex MacCallum as assistant managing editor for audience development and Sam Dolnick as senior editor for mobile. HuffPost Wednesday’s masthead changes are the biggest since Baquet took the reins, but there have been several other moves internally in recent months. Baquet announced the addition of several deputy-level editors in the newsroom in July.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Tebow Joins GMA | EU Regulators Approve BSkyB Acquisitions

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Tim Tebow Joins Good Morning America as Contributor (TVNewser)
With football dominating much of the news this week, Good Morning America is adding another former NFL star to its roster. THR / The Live Feed Already ingrained in the Disney-ABC family as an ESPN analyst, Tim Tebow officially makes his debut on the current No. 1 morning talk show as the newest contributor on Sept. 15. HuffPost ABC News said that Tebow will help with the morning show’s “Motivate Me Monday” series, reporting from the studio and towns across the country on inspirational stories. The Sentinel Tebow’s first story will focus on 10-year-old Deven Jackson of Perry County, Pa. Two weeks ago, Jackson played in a midget football game, three years after losing both legs to a rare illness. Tebow spent the day with Jackson and his family at their home. Tebow also spoke to Jackson’s midget football team. The league is trying to raise $10,000 to purchase the proper equipment for Jackson. The Wire Tebow, 27, played college football at the University of Florida from 2007-2009, during which time he became the first underclassman to win the Heisman Trophy. Despite early success in the NFL with Denver Broncos, Tebow struggled in subsequent stints with the New York Jets and New England Patriots.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Todd Makes MTP Debut | Scarborough Joins NBC News

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Chuck Todd’s First Meet The Press: ‘This Program Will Continue to Evolve’ (TVNewser)
Chuck Todd opened his first Meet The Press, surrounded by the press. At a new desk, with Todd at its center, NBC’s political director introduced those around him: MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, Nia-Malika Henderson of The Washington Post, NBC’s Andrea Mitchell and waiting in the wings, BuzzFeed’s John Stanton and Amy Walter, formerly of ABC News, now with the Cook Political Report. FishbowlDC For his first Sunday as moderator, Todd talked exclusively with President Barack Obama on topics ranging from ISIS to U.S. relations with Russia and Ukraine and the 2014 midterm elections. The interview took place at the White House over the weekend and aired during Sunday’s 10:30 a.m. broadcast of MTP. Deadline Hollywood Things got testy — and Todd showed a tendency to interrupt — when Obama defended his decision to delay executive action on immigration, saying the summer’s surge of unaccompanied children at the Mexican border changed the politics of the issue. He rejected Todd’s notion the postponement is a political tactic intended to help embattled Democrats in the months before midterm elections, saying that the delay will help make new immigration policies “sustainable” when they are announced later this year. HuffPost There were other small tweaks in the show; Todd threaded his big interview with President Obama throughout the show instead of front-loading it at the beginning, turning to the panel after each portion was over. Todd’s real test will be in the weeks and months ahead. Todd has vowed to cut down on the Beltway bloviators and said he won’t book politicians unless they actually have a stake in the issue at hand. And, of course, he has to pull Meet The Press out of its ratings sinkhole. Politico In selecting Todd as moderator, the NBC News brass is gambling on the belief that a Sunday morning public affairs show can still set the national agenda, as it did under the late Tim Russert. The payoff, they hope, is that Todd can once again make Meet The Press a dominant force in American politics and — though they’d never admit it publicly — effectively erase the nightmare that was David Gregory’s final year as moderator.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Gore Sues Al Jazeera | MTP Pays Tribute to Gregory

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Al Gore Sues Al Jazeera Over $500 Million Current TV Deal (Bloomberg)
Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore has sued Al Jazeera, claiming the satellite news provider owned by the Qatari royal family owes him and a partner $65 million from a deal to buy his network, Current TV. TVNewser “Our outside counsel is reviewing the complaint,” an Al Jazeera spokesperson said. “We think it relates to a commercial dispute between former shareholders of Current Media and Al Jazeera America. We may have further comment once they’ve fully reviewed everything.” Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Gore and business partner Joel Hyatt, the co-founders of Current Media, say that Al Jazeera has unlawfully refused to turn over tens of millions of dollars currently located in an escrow account. That money is owed to Current Media shareholders per the terms of the $500-million merger agreement made in January 2013, the plaintiffs say. New York Post Gore, 66, was set to personally pocket an estimated $100 million on the sale of his 20 percent stake in the network, which he helped found in 2004. Mediaite In a statement, Gore’s lawyer said, “Al Jazeera America wants to give itself a discount on the purchase price that was agreed to nearly two years ago. We are asking the court to order Al Jazeera America to stop wrongfully withholding the escrow funds that belong to Current’s former shareholders.” It should be noted that last year, Gore himself was sued for the sale of Current TV.

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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: Murray Named Fortune Editor | Gunshots Fired at AJ Bureau

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Alan Murray Named Editor of Fortune (FishbowlNY)
Alan Murray has been named the new editor of Fortune. He will be just the 17th editor of the glossy, which was founded in 1930 by the legendary Henry Luce. TVNewser Murray joins the Time Inc. publication following a short stint as president of the Pew Research Center. Murray was CNBC’s Washington bureau chief from 2002 to 2005, where he co-hosted Capital Report With Alan Murray And Gloria Borger. Borger is now with CNN. FishbowlDC Murray joined Pew as president in November 2012. In addition to WSJ bureau chief, he served as deputy managing editor and executive editor of online for the Wall Street Journal. Capital New York Murray replaces longtime Fortune editor Andy Serwer, who is leaving Time Inc. after 29 years. Serwer spent eight years running Fortune, which is one of the company’s most prominent brands along with Time, Sports Illustrated, People and Entertainment Weekly. HuffPost Murray will remain at Pew until Aug. 1. He said that Jim McMillan, general counsel and corporate secretary at the Pew Charitable Trusts, will then take over as “acting president” while the company searches for a new leader.

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