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Posts Tagged ‘DirecTV’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Sony to Release The Interview | Disney, DirecTV Strike Deal

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Sony Backtracks, Will Release The Interview After All (PRNewser)
We all got our wish: The Interview will be available in limited release on Christmas Day. NYT The development gave new life to a film that Sony had pulled from distribution last week, after hackers threatened violence against any theater that played it. Sony also left open the door to video-on-demand availability of the movie, either simultaneously with its debut in theaters, or nearly so. THR Theaters showing The Interview are expected to put added security measures in place. Sony, though, isn’t planning to assist the theaters with added security, leaving it up to theater owners to foot the bill, per normal practice, insiders say. Variety The White House has issued a strong statement of support for Sony Pictures’ decision to release the film on Christmas Day. GalleyCat The PEN American Center sent a letter addressed to the CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment, Michael Lynton, to protest against Sony’s censorship of the film last week. The organization has posted the full piece on its website. FishbowlDC A petition titled ”We the undersigned support Sony” also emerged in which backers claimed to ”support theatrical engagements of The Interview should Sony, at its sole discretion, decide to release it to theaters.”

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Columbia to Review UVA Rape Story | TWC-Comcast Merger Halted

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Rolling Stone Asks Columbia to Investigate Botched UVA Rape Story (FishbowlNY)
Rolling Stone has asked Columbia University to figure out just how badly it botched its UVA rape story. Capital New York The Columbia Graduate School of Journalism will conduct an independent investigation into the reporting process of Sabrina Rubin Erdely’s feature on sexual assault at the University of Virginia. HuffPost Rolling Stone apologized on Dec. 5 after several news organizations revealed problems in contributing editor Erdely’s article. However, the magazine has not fully retracted the story. Since the apology, Rolling Stone editors and Erdely have declined to comment on the article, citing an internal review process. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media The Washington Post and other publications have been re-reporting the events described in the piece and have found several striking inconsistencies, including that several people quoted in the article were never actually contacted by the magazine and that the accused rapists were also never contacted. NYT Jann Wenner, Rolling Stone’s editor and publisher, said that the review would be led by Steve Coll, the journalism school’s dean, and Sheila Coronel, the dean of academic affairs, and that it would evaluate “the editorial process that led to the publication of the story.” The report will be published unedited and in its entirety on Rolling Stone’s website, and excerpts will appear in the magazine.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Hackers Applaud Sony | Fox News, FBN Pulled From Dish

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Hackers to Sony: We’ll Stand Down if You Never Release Movie (CNN)
The hackers behind a devastating cyberattack at Sony Pictures have sent a new message to executives at the company, crediting them for a “very wise” decision to cancel the Christmas day release of The Interview, a source close to the company said. TVNewser The emails, sent Thursday night, included the message “you’ve done the right thing.” The emails suggested information stolen during the hack could be released if Sony fails to ensure that the film is never seen. Re/code In an interview on NBC’s Meet The Press Sunday, David Boies, the studio’s lawyer, said The Interview will be released. “Sony has been fighting to get this picture distributed. It will be distributed,” he told NBC’s Chuck Todd, adding the studio is still trying to determine the best distribution outlet that would also ensure people’s safety. THR / AP North Korea on Saturday proposed a joint investigation with the U.S. into the hacking attack, warning of “serious” consequences if Washington rejects a probe that it believes would prove Pyongyang had nothing to do with the cyberattack. The proposal was seen by analysts as a typical ploy by the North to try to show that it is sincere, even though it knows the U.S. would never accept its offer for a joint investigation. U.S. officials blame North Korea for the hacking, citing the tools used in the Sony attack and previous hacks linked to the North, and have vowed to respond. TMZ According to sources connected with the studio, Judy Smith — the inspiration behind the Olivia Pope character on Scandal – has been quietly advising Sony Pictures chief Amy Pascal.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Snyderman Apologizes on Air | Elliott Takes NYT Buyout

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Dr. Nancy Snyderman Apologizes: ‘Good People Can Make Mistakes’ (TVNewser)
Dr. Nancy Snyderman returned to NBC News Wednesday morning to report a story on depression in America. But the segment began with Matt Lauer pressing her on why she violated a voluntary quarantine following an Ebola reporting trip to Liberia. PRNewser Rather than just saying she was sorry for breaking the rules, she and Lauer got more specific about what exactly went wrong. Besides “scaring my community,” she says she was guilty of “adding to the confusion of terms.” THR Snyderman initially apologized for her team violating its voluntary quarantine, but now, almost two months later, she’s admitted that she, herself, broke the rules and apologized for that. “I’m very sorry for…scaring my community and the country,” she said on Wednesday’s Today, later adding, “I stepped outside the boundaries of what I promised to do and what was expected of me and for that I’m sorry.” HuffPost Snyderman had been absent from the network since October after traveling to Liberia with an NBC News crew — which included cameraman Ashoka Mukpo, a former Ebola patient — and then failing to voluntarily confine herself to a 21-day quarantine. Her actions caused outrage and heightening fear among the public after discovery that her colleague had contracted the virus. Snyderman issued a statement shortly after breaking quarantine in October, but questions lingered about the date of her return to the network (or whether she would return at all). Variety Snyderman’s colleague eventually recovered from the disease, and Snyderman and the rest of her team remained symptom-free. Wednesday, she added that she hopes her mistake hasn’t drawn attention from the bigger story.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Amazon, Hachette End Dispute | CNN Picks Up Three Originals

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Hachette, Amazon Establish New Multi-Year Contract (GalleyCat)
Hachette Book Group and Amazon have established a new multi-year agreement. The two companies have been locked in a dispute since April. THR The companies have reached a new agreement covering eBook and print sales in the U.S. The two were reportedly in a standoff over eBook revenues, with the online retailer reportedly delaying shipments, reducing discounts and preventing people from preordering Hachette titles. Mashable The dispute began when Amazon stopped taking preorders for Hachette titles. Since that time, the two have dialed up the rhetoric, with Hachette authors Malcolm Gladwell and James Patterson criticizing Amazon, while the online retailer charged that Hachette was “stonewalling” about making a deal. WSJ Neither side claimed victory and it may be that both Hachette and Amazon made concessions in the end. Under the new eBook agreement, which will take effect in early 2015, Hachette will set the prices of its consumer titles. The companies said Hachette will get better terms when it “delivers lower prices for readers.” Amazon said on Thursday it has resumed treating Hachette titles as it did before the dispute. NYT The conflict, which played out in increasingly contentious forums as the year progressed, left wounds too deep for true celebration Thursday. Amazon has been cast as a bully in publications across the ideological spectrum, and a large group of authors is calling for it to be investigated on antitrust grounds. Its sales were hit by the dispute, analysts said. Amazon’s supporters publicly questioned the need for Hachette, the fourth largest publisher, to exist in an era when anyone can publish themselves digitally, an accusation Hachette was reluctant to respond to. And even if Amazon got less in the deal than it originally wanted, it still controls nearly half the book trade, an unprecedented level for one retailer. And the dispute showed it is not afraid to use its power to discourage sales.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: CBSN Launches Glitch-Free | Aereo to Downsize, Cut Staff

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CBS Launches Digital News Network CBSN (LostRemote)
After announcing a subscription-based streaming service, CBS launched an all-digital streaming news network, CBSN, on Thursday. So now you can watch live, anchored news whenever you want, for free. TVNewser It didn’t look like launch day at CBSN, and that’s a big achievement. Freed from the burden of launch day hoopla and high expectations, CBS News turned on its brand new live streaming news channel, and did so without a hitch. Capital New York The company is stressing that the move is not meant as a way into the 24-hour cable-news channel fray. “We are not endeavoring to start a cable news channel online,” CBS News president David Rhodes said. “We are trying to create something that is native for connected devices.” Those devices include laptops and PCs, smartphones and tablets, and, yes, Internet-connected TVs. The target audience: younger viewers, some of whom may not subscribe to a pay-TV service. THR The network — available on CBSNews.com, the CBS News app and connected TV devices such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku — will feature 15 hours of live, anchored coverage from 9 a.m. ET to midnight ET every weekday. The segments will be split into 60-minute blocks of live, updated news. CBS News special reports will be simulcast on CBSN during breaking news and content will also be fed in from CBS affiliate stations, CNET, CBSSports.com and Entertainment Tonight. New York Post The owner of CBS broadcast network, radio stations and Showtime missed the cable boom of the past decades but appears to be diving headfirst into a mobile future. Last month it joined with its affiliate partners to launch CBS All Access, a standalone digital platform for current and archived content.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Raven to Retire From A&E | NBC Undecided on Virgin Galactic Series

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A&E Networks Chairman Abbe Raven to Retire (THR)
Cable pioneer Abbe Raven is set to retire. Her last day as chairman of A&E Networks will be Feb. 2. The news comes nearly a year after Raven’s protégé, Nancy Dubuc, was elevated to CEO and Raven to chairman. Deadline Hollywood Dubuc took oversight of the day-to-day operations of the company, while Raven remained in charge of A&E Networks’ long-term business and revenue opportunities, including distribution, as well as public policy initiatives and corporate outreach. A year ago, Dubuc also took over distribution. She will remain president and CEO. Variety Raven’s role as chairman will not be filled. Raven is without question one of key architects of A&E Networks’ growth, particularly in the past 15 years. The company, a joint venture of Hearst Corp. and Disney, is home to some of cable’s most prosperous channels, but as a private concern it is shielded from quarterly earnings scrutiny. Under Raven and Dubuc, A&E has rapidly expanded its domestic and international portfolio, which generates an estimated $3.8 billion in annual revenue. TheWrap Prior to her position as president and CEO, Raven held high level executive roles at the company’s properties A&E Network, The Biography Channel and The History Channel. WSJ The handoff also comes at a challenging time. After setting cable-television ratings records last year with hits like Duck Dynasty on A&E and The Bible on History, the company’s two biggest channels have endured sharp declines this year. A&E’s ratings are down 32 percent so far this year in total viewers and 25 percent in its target demographic of 25- to 54-year olds, while History’s ratings are down 15 percent in both total viewers and those 25 to 54.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: NYT Cuts Staff, NYT Opinion | Jeter Launches ‘Players’ Tribune’

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NYT to Cut 100 Newsroom Jobs, Shutter NYT Opinion (FishbowlNY)
Wednesday was not a good day for many New York Times staffers. The paper cut a whopping 100 people from its newsroom. The last time the Times let go of this many people was in 2009. NYT Arthur Sulzberger Jr., the newspaper’s publisher, and Mark Thompson, its chief executive, said that in addition to the job cuts, NYT Opinion, a new mobile app dedicated to opinion content, was shutting down because it was not attracting enough subscribers. HuffPost The Times said it would seek to eliminate roughly 100 jobs in the newsroom through either buyouts or layoffs. Additional reductions are expected in the editorial and business departments. The cuts have been widely expected for weeks. The paper’s own report on the changes noted that the newsroom will lose around 7.5 percent of its employees. That still leaves it with one of the biggest in the industry. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media The Times has already eliminated at least 230 newsroom positions since 2008, even as it continues to staff up on the digital and development side. The new cutbacks should leave the Times with roughly 1,200 newsroom staff. New York Post The cuts appear aimed at getting more senior staffers to exit. Employees covered by the Newspaper Guild will receive three weeks of salary for each year worked, capped at a maximum of two times annual salary, according to Baquet’s memo. In addition, the Times is offering a cash payout of 35 percent of total severance to staffers who have been at the company 20 years or more.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Digital First Mulls Sale | DirecTV to Launch Online Services

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Digital First Media, Second Biggest U.S. Newspaper Publisher, to Consider Sale (HuffPost / AP)
Newspaper company Digital First Media said Friday that it is exploring strategic options, which could include a sale of the company or parts of it. New York Post Chief executive John Paton said the publisher of the Denver Post, the Los Angeles Daily News, The New Haven Register and 73 other daily and Sunday papers is profitable and generates $1.2 billion of revenue. NYT Digital First has long suffered from the headwinds facing newspapers. One former division, The Journal Register Company, which includes papers like The New Haven Register and The Trentonian, filed for bankruptcy twice in the last five years. In April, the company announced that it was shutting down Project Thunderdome, a centralized newsroom that aimed to provide articles from around the nation and the world to the company’s 75 newsrooms. That closing resulted in layoffs for more than 50 people in the Project Thunderdome newsroom. Denver Post Digital First Media was formed in December 2013 with the merger of Denver-based MediaNews Group and the former Journal Register Co. It is the nation’s second-largest newspaper company, based on circulation, operating in 15 states, with 800 multi-platform news and information products, including 76 daily and Sunday newspapers and 160 weeklies. The company said it serves 75 million customers monthly. Poynter / MediaWire Ken Doctor reported in April that Digital First planned to sell its newspapers at the same time it shuttered Project Thunderdome. The company won’t set a deadline for the sale or report any developments “until the Board has determined whether it will proceed with one or several transaction(s), or otherwise concludes its review,” a news release said.

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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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