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Posts Tagged ‘Comcast’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Díaz-Balart to MSNBC | NPR Cuts Tell Me More | Sulzberger Talks

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José Díaz-Balart Named MSNBC’s 10 A.M. Host (TVNewser)
Telemundo anchor José Díaz-Balart has been named MSNBC’s 10 a.m. anchor, replacing Chris Jansing, who is leaving MSNBC to become NBC’s senior White House correspondent. HuffPost He will host his MSNBC show from Miami and take over when Jansing departs in June. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Díaz-Balart will continue to co-anchor Telemundo’s Noticiero Telemundo and host Enfoque Con José Díaz-Balart. Ari Melber, a co-host on MSNBC’s afternoon program The Cycle, had been in the running against Díaz-Balart for the 10 a.m. slot, several sources said in recent weeks. The Associated Press MSNBC president Phil Griffin said Tuesday the deal has been in the works for some nine months. Griffin says he’s wanted to snag Díaz-Balart for years but had to find a time slot that wouldn’t conflict with the nightly news on Telemundo, which is also a division of NBC Universal. Díaz-Balart is the brother of U.S. Rep. Mario Díaz-Balart and former Rep. Lincoln Díaz-Balart. His aunt was the first wife of Cuban leader Fidel Castro. Variety Díaz-Balart began his career in 1983 and has reported historic events and interviewed major political figures for prestigious news outlets including NBC News and Telemundo. His achievements include being the first journalist to serve as news anchor on two national television networks in Spanish and English on the same day for an entire season.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Walters Signs Off | Abramson/NYT Fight Unfolds | FCC Approves Proposal

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Two Dozen Women of TV News, Barbara Walters’ Legacy, Join Her on Her Final View (TVNewser)
Thursday afternoon, the legacy of Barbara Walters came to life in the finale of her final The View, taped at ABC’s Westside studios and set to air Friday. Mediaite All 11 current and former co-hosts of The View turned up to send off Walters. In an emotional segment, the hosts shared their fondest memories of the program’s founding member and some of the advice that they said guides them in their present careers. THR / The Live Feed Oprah Winfrey and Hillary Clinton were among the surprise guests who showed up to say goodbye. After more than 50 years in TV news, Walters is officially retiring, leaving her co-hosting gig on The View, but she’ll continue to serve as the show’s executive producer and contribute to ABC News on an as-needed basis. The Associated Press Walters brought the hour to a close with a heartfelt statement looking back with amazement on her career, then signing off with a pledge to “take a deep breath and enjoy my View.” But a more telling moment took place during a break, as the throng of women she had paved the way for posed with her for a group portrait. TheWrap The cadre of A-List media stars who gathered for the photo included Winfrey, Katie Couric, Joan Lunden, Robin Roberts, Connie Chung, Gayle King, Maria Shriver, Paula Zahn, Jane Pauley, Savannah Guthrie, Elizabeth Vargas, Lara Spencer, Tamron Hall, Diane Sawyer, Cynthia McFadden, Natalie Morales, JuJu Chang, Amy Robach, Deborah Norville and Hoda Kotb, as well as Walters’ co-hosts, Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Rosie O’Donnell, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, Debbie Matenopoulos, Lisa Ling, Star Jones, Jenny McCarthy and Meredith Vieira.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: ECJ Tackles Web Records | ABC Pitches Brands | FCC Faces Protests

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European Court Lets Users Erase Records on Web (NYT)
Europe’s highest court said on Tuesday that people had the right to influence what the world could learn about them through online searches, a ruling that rejected long-established notions about the free flow of information on the Internet. Poynter / MediaWire If results display pages that are “inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant, or excessive in relation to the purposes for which they were processed and in the light of the time that has elapsed,” the search engine operator must remove them, the court ruled, even if the “publication in itself on those pages is lawful.” BBC News The case was brought by a Spanish man who complained that an auction notice of his repossessed home on Google’s search results infringed his privacy. Google says it does not control data, it only offers links to information freely available on the Internet. It has previously said forcing it to remove data amounts to censorship. WSJ Some lawyers argue that the ruling will probably only be applied for searches done and displayed in Europe, and only for European data subjects, for instance, EU citizens or European residents. The court specifically said, however, that companies can’t get out of compliance simply by saying their servers are outside of Europe. The technology industry has rallied around freedom of speech, long a tenet of Western democracy but enshrined specifically in the U.S. Constitution as its First Amendment. Privacy-rights activists and many European officials have supported a competing notion: the “right to be forgotten.” Reuters The ruling creates technical challenges as well as potential extra costs for companies like Google, the world’s No. 1 search engine, and Facebook. The European Court of Justice (ECJ) said the rights of people whose privacy has been infringed outweighed the general public interest. Google said it was disappointed with the ruling, which contradicted a non-binding opinion from the ECJ’s court adviser last year that said deleting sensitive information from search results would interfere with freedom of expression.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Apple to Buy Beats | Time Inc. Spin-off Set | House Questions Comcast Merger

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Apple in Talks for $3.2 Billion Beats Deal (Financial Times)
Apple is closing in on its largest ever acquisition with the planned $3.2 billion purchase of Beats Electronics, the headphone maker and music streaming operator founded by music producer Jimmy Iovine and the hip-hop star Dr. Dre. The deal could be announced as early as next week, people familiar with the negotiations said, but they cautioned that some details had yet to be agreed upon and talks could still fall apart. GigaOM While Beats Electronics is best known for its premium headphones, it launched a streaming music service, Beats Music, in January. According to the report, the streaming service would be included in the deal. Apple runs its own streaming music service, iTunes Radio. NYT / DealBook For Apple, whose revenue growth has slowed sharply in the last few years, the deal could point to a headlong move into the frontier of streaming music. iTunes Radio has been slow to enter the streaming world. At over $3 billion, the Beats acquisition would be a major departure for Apple, which under Steve Jobs favored smaller deals. CNET Beats Music debuted with a powerful billing and marketing partnership with AT&T and it has reportedly been growing quickly. Although the company has yet to disclose hard and fast subscriber numbers, industry estimates peg the total at about 200,000. The talks come as trends in music purchasing are shifting to subscription services. Data from the Recording Industry Association of America found that paid subscription services grew the fastest of all digital formats last year, rising to 57 percent, while revenues from permanent digital downloads that are iTunes’ specialty declined 1 percent. Mashable Apple has ramped up its pace of acquisitions in recent months. CEO Tim Cook has said in the past that he’s open to the idea of making 10-figure acquisitions. Apple stock was down by a little less than 0.5 percent in after-hours trading following the report.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Jansing Promoted | CBS Crew Detained | News Corp. Buys Harlequin

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Chris Jansing Named Senior White House Correspondent for NBC News (TVNewser)
Changes are coming to NBC’s Washington bureau. NBC News president Deborah Turness has named Chris Jansing as the new senior white house correspondent and Peter Alexander as national correspondent. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Jansing, who will report primarily for NBC Nightly News, will relocate from New York to Washington and will stop hosting her MSNBC show Jansing & Co. The network said her replacement will be announced in the coming weeks. Variety Both Jansing and Alexander will work as part of a unit that also comprises Chuck Todd, the NBC News political director and chief White House correspondent, and Kristen Welker, who will continue to report for NBC Nightly News and Today. HuffPost It will be the latest of a string of changes at that network, which has recently reshuffled its daytime lineup and added Ronan Farrow and Joy Reid to its roster. Deadline Hollywood Jansing joined NBC News in June 1998, and has also anchored Jansing & Co. on MSNBC since October 2010. She anchored MSNBC’s coverage of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 as the events unfolded, extensively covered several presidential campaigns for both NBC News and MSNBC and hosted a series of reports called Battleground America.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Oprah Eyes Clippers | Viacom to Buy Channel 5 | Time Warner Profits Soar

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Oprah Considering Los Angeles Clippers Bid (ESPN)
Oprah Winfrey, David Geffen and Larry Ellison will join together in a bid to buy the Los Angeles Clippers if the NBA’s board of governors votes to force Donald Sterling to sell the team, Geffen said Wednesday. FishbowlNY Others interested in buying the Clippers include Diddy (he even created his own hashtag #DiddyBuyTheClippers) and Floyd Mayweather. THR The OWN Network founder would pair with music mogul Geffen and Oracle co-founder Ellison in an investor role. On Tuesday, NBA commissioner Adam Silver pledged to force the sale of the Clippers after audio recordings of racist remarks made by owner Donald Sterling surfaced on TMZ days earlier. Sterling, who has owned the Clippers franchise since 1981, faces a ban from attending all NBA games as well as making any business decisions for the team. LA Times / Sports Now Winfrey, in reference to Sterling’s comments, told TMZ on Tuesday that “the plantation days are over.” She also denied having interest in purchasing the team on her own. However, Winfrey’s spokesperson, Nicole Nichols, issued a statement Wednesday confirming that she’s in talks about becoming an investor. Reuters The advisory finance committee of the NBA’s governing board scheduled a meeting for Thursday to review the next steps for forcing a sale of the Clippers, as urged on Tuesday by NBA commissioner Adam Silver, a league spokeswoman said. Sterling, who bought the Clippers in 1981 for $13 million when the team was based in San Diego, has not indicated whether he would relinquish ownership without a fight. Experts have estimated that the franchise, which moved to Los Angeles in 1984, could now be worth as much as $800 million.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Separatists in Ukraine Seize TV HQ | CNN Raises Ethical Questions | Gregory Slams Report

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Separatists Seize Control of TV HQ in East Ukraine City (Reuters)
Pro-Russian separatists on Sunday seized control of the offices of regional state television in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk and said they would take it off air and broadcast a Kremlin-backed Russian channel instead. Sky News Four men wearing masks and armed with truncheons were standing at the entrance to the building in Donetsk, while more separatists could be seen inside wearing camouflage fatigues. The regional governor’s office and the city hall in Donetsk have already been seized by separatists. NBC News About 15 police officers were standing a short distance away but were not trying to resist the separatists. A crowd of around 400 people surrounded the building and shouted “Russia!” and “Referendum!,” a reference to a vote the separatists want to hold on seceding from Ukraine. The protesters later drifted away, but the separatist guards on the doors remained. One of the masked men at the entrance, who asked why the building had been seized, said: “They show lies; they try to influence the people and they broadcast misinformation.” The Guardian The station’s shaken director, Oleg Dzholos, emerged soon afterward to say that the separatists had brought with them a technician who was turning off Kiev television and replacing it with Rossiya 24. The Russian state channel calls Ukraine’s pro-western leaders “fascists” and frequently runs montages of them with footage of the Nazis. “We hope to continue broadcasting,” Dzholos said. His staff of 250 would be back at work on Monday morning, he said. WSJ Sunday’s incident marked an escalation in the struggle between pro-Russian protesters who want to turn Ukraine’s industrial heartland into a sovereign republic and Kiev’s interim government, which has tried, without success, to defeat a separatist rebellion that threatens the unity of the country. Ukraine accuses Russia of stirring up the separatist unrest by broadcasting strident anti-Kiev views on Russian television channels and by sending covert operatives to help organize the insurgency, particularly in Slovyansk, a city north of Donetsk that has been taken over by heavily armed gunmen. Moscow denies any role.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Pulitzers Announced | Google Buys Drone Maker | Relativity Eyes Maker Studios

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2014 Pulitzer Prizes Announced (FishbowlNY)
The Pulitzer Prizes celebrate the best of the best, and Monday we learned the latest recipients of journalism’s highest honor. TVNewser The Washington Post and the U.S. edition of The Guardian have won the award. They will share the Public Service award for their series of stories on NSA surveillance, as revealed by Edward Snowden, an NSA contractor who gave the top-secret information to the news organizations. The Pulitzer committee said the journalism was “marked by authoritative and insightful reports that helped the public understand how the disclosures fit into the larger framework of national security.” Politico Snowden immediately declared the decision “a vindication.” The reporting on the former government contractor’s leaks was led by journalists Glenn Greenwald and Ewan McAskill at The Guardian, Barton Gellman at the Post, and Laura Poitras, who worked with both newspapers. NYT The Boston Globe won the breaking news prize for its coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing, which killed three people and wounded at least 260. The Post won a second award, for explanatory journalism. Eli Saslow, 31, a staff writer, won for a series of articles on American families that rely on the federal food stamp program. GalleyCat Author Donna Tartt won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction for her book The Goldfinch. The novel about an orphan also won Amazon’s Best Books of the Month “Spotlight Pick” in October 2013 and was shortlisted for 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Comcast, TWC Face Senate | Pauley to CBS | CNN’s Digital Video Push

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Senate Panel Expresses Caution on Merger of Cable Giants (NYT)
Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee expressed concern on Wednesday that the proposed $45 billion merger of Comcast and Time Warner Cable would raise the prices consumers pay for cable television and high-speed Internet service while leaving them with fewer choices for video programming. But the senators generally failed to rattle Comcast and Time Warner executives or cause them to diverge from their basic defense of the merger: that it will not affect competition because the two companies do not compete anywhere. Only one senator, Al Franken, Democrat of Minnesota, said during the three-hour hearing that he wanted the merger blocked. CNNMoney Comcast and Time Warner Cable said that the merger will lead to improvements in services for customers, creating scale and cost savings that will drive new investments. Several Republican senators, most notably Orin Hatch of Utah, seemed to agree. Although the combined company would have a presence in 19 of the top 20 U.S. markets, Comcast executive vice president David Cohen noted that Comcast and Time Warner Cable don’t compete in any of those cities. He argued that customer choices therefore won’t be affected. The Washington Post / The Switch “There’s no doubt that Comcast is a huge, influential company with more than 100 lobbyists” hired to persuade regulators and lawmakers to approve the deal, said Franken. “But I’ve also heard from over 100,000 consumers who oppose the deal.” Cohen said at the hearing that he couldn’t promise to reduce prices on their services. The rise of cable bills at three times the rate of inflation is among the many concerns consumers have about the proposal that would merge the top two cable firms and the biggest and third-biggest broadband providers. Adweek It’s not that the Senators didn’t have “concerns.” The stats that will define the combined company’s unmatched size — 19 of the top 20 markets, 23 of the top 25, and 37 of the top 50 — give lawmakers pause. They even struggled to understand whether or not the combined company would dominate advertising sales. But they stopped short of opposing the merger, calling on the Federal Communications Commission and Department of Justice “to consider carefully the impact on consumers as they review the pending merger,” said judiciary chairman Patrick Leahy. WSJ / MoneyBeat The hearing came a day after Comcast submitted a 180-page document justifying its purchase of Time Warner Cable. The filing walked through the various parts of the media industry that could be affected by the deal, including online video, television programming and broadband Internet access, as well as local ad sales in the cable market. If the deal wins approval, Comcast would have 30 percent of the nation’s pay-TV subscribers and nearly 40 percent of U.S. broadband subscribers.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Comcast Pleads Case | DirecTV Restores TWC | Breitbart Loses Whip

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As Comcast Takes Next Step in TWC Merger, Opposition Groups Band Together (TVNewser)
Comcast took the next step in its $45 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable Tuesday morning by filing a joint Applications and Public Interest Statement with the FCC. In a blog post about the filing, Comcast EVP David Cohen argued that the deal is good for consumers, especially current TWC customers. Those opposed to the deal, understandably, don’t think so. Fifty groups sent a letter to the attorney general and FCC chairman Tuesday asking that the deal be blocked. Capital New York The 650-page document filed with the FCC outlines the reasons Comcast believes the proposed merger with TWC would be in the public interest. Much of the document spelled out in granular detail arguments made by Comcast in its original announcement of the proposed deal, but there are some notable new takes. Comcast now sees itself as a tech company, in competition with Google, Facebook and Netflix just as much as traditional competitors like DirecTV and Verizon. Comcast argues that it doesn’t compete with TWC, as they do not operate in the same areas. Variety Critics have claimed the Comcast-TWC merger, which would create an entity that controls 30 percent of the country’s pay-TV market, is decidedly not in the public interest because it would result in fewer choices and higher prices for consumers. Moreover, the combination “could compromise the open nature of the Internet,” Sen. Al Franken told Justice Department officials last month. CNET Last week, Comcast filed a Hart-Scott-Rodino notification with the U.S. Department of Justice, which will begin the antitrust review of the merger. And on Wednesday, Cohen will testify about the merger before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. Now that the official filing has been made in the merger, which was announced in February, the FCC will have a self-imposed deadline of 180 days to review and make its decision. USA Today Facing a growing number of customers flocking to streaming video and content providers demanding more payment for programs, TWC agreed in February to be bought by Comcast for $45 billion. The acquisition would give Comcast access to key media markets that it has coveted, including New York and Los Angeles, and occupy about 40 percent of the Internet service market, or about 32 million customers.

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