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Posts Tagged ‘Jeff Zucker’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Crowley to Leave CNN | Mass Exodus at TNR, Issue Canned

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Candy Crowley Leaving CNN (TVNewser)
Candy Crowley, a 27-year CNN veteran, is leaving the network. The move was announced in an email from CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker. FishbowlDC Crowley’s career at CNN began in 1987 as a political correspondent, where she covered a handful of successful and unsuccessful presidential campaigns, including those of Pat Buchanan, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan and Mitt Romney, among others. In 2012, she became the first woman to moderate a presidential debate. THR Crowley currently serves as CNN’s chief political correspondent and anchor of its Sunday morning show State of The Union With Candy Crowley. Staffing has been relatively stable at CNN over the last year. Though the arrival of Zucker marked several departures, politicos James Carville and Mary Matalin among them, other changes have been gradual. Piers Morgan notably left after sinking ratings for his 9 p.m. telecast earlier in 2014. Capital New York Crowley, Zucker wrote, “has let us know that she has made the decision to move on… As difficult as it is for us to imagine CNN without Candy, we know that she comes to this decision thoughtfully, she has our full support,” the email said. The reason for Crowley’s departure was not made clear. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Zucker did not mention who would replace Crowley on State of The Union. The network will be keeping the show, a spokesperson confirmed.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Big Changes at TNR | CBS, Dish Deadline Passes Without Blackout

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Big Changes at The New Republic (FishbowlNY)
In this, the New Republic’s 100th year, a new direction. FishbowlDC Franklin Foer, editor of TNR, sent out a staff email Thursday announcing his resignation from the magazine. Capital New York Literary editor Leon Wieseltier is also out. Gabriel Snyder, a former editor of The Atlantic Wire and most recently a digital adviser at Bloomberg, has been tapped to succeed Foer, TNR chief executive Guy Vidra wrote in an email to staff. Furthermore, the magazine will be reducing its frequency from 20 to 10 issues a year, moving from Washington D.C. to an office in New York City’s Union Square and “making some changes to staff structure,” Vidra added. HuffPost Speculation had run rampant that Foer might leave the magazine, which he returned to edit in 2012 following its sale to Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes. Some staffers fear that Hughes and chief executive Vidra are too focused on increasing Web traffic, and that such a strategy could pull the magazine away from its legacy of narrative journalism and criticism. In his memo to staff Thursday, Foer acknowledged the competing plans for the magazine’s future. “Chris and Guy have significant plans for this place,” he wrote. “And their plans and my own vision for TNR meaningfully diverge.” Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Hughes bought TNR in 2012 at the age of 28 with ambitions of restoring its esteemed place in Washington media. Instead, TNR failed to hire marquee names, struggled to attract advertisers and failed to gain a prominent place in the conversation.

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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: YouTube Launches Paid Music Service | FNC Special Tops Tuesday

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YouTube Music Streaming Service Launches in Beta (SocialTimes)
YouTube music has faced some challenges lately; the company lost its product manager over the summer and had disagreements with indie music labels. While news of its music offering leaked in August, Google didn’t want to launch the new service until it reached a deal with indie labels. In a bid to compete with streaming services like Pandora and Spotify, Google is finally rolling out YouTube Music Key in invitation-only beta. Re/code The company is overhauling the free version of its Android app, and next week it’ll start inviting some of its users to try a new subscription feature, which it’s building into its Android and iOS apps. GigaOM For early adopters, it will cost $7.99 per month with the first six months free, and eventually it will cost $9.99 per month, the same price as Spotify Premium. YouTube Music Key’s banner feature is that it gives subscribers the ability to listen to music without ads, as well as run YouTube as a background app on mobile devices, allowing users to listen to YouTube videos while playing a game or locking their home screen. THR With the monthly fee, users also receive access to a Google Play Music subscription, which offers more than 30 million songs and playlists for streaming. Beginning Wednesday, YouTube is also rolling out new music features for free, ad-supported music video viewing. YouTube also plans to make it easier to find an artist’s discography through their official music videos and other songs uploaded to the streamer, so a user can play a full album straight through. NYT With its new service, YouTube hopes to reform its reputation in the music industry as a phenomenal free site to promote songs, but one that pays a pittance in royalties. As YouTube pushes into paid content, other online music outlets — under considerable pressure from the recording industry — are being forced to defend or change their business models to better compensate artists.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Fox News Tops Election Week | Yahoo! Buys BrightRoll

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Fox News Channel No. 1 for Election Week 2014 (TVNewser)
Midterm elections translated to a big victory for Fox News Channel. FNC marked its highest-rated week of 2014 in both total day and primetime (Monday to Friday). Variety Its average around-the-clock viewership of 1.43 million — its highest for any week of 2014 — put it ahead of runners-up ESPN and Nickelodeon, both of which drew 1.28 million. This is the first time since the week of the Boston Marathon bombings that FNC has been No. 1 on cable in total day. Deadline Hollywood In primetime, FNC finished the week in second place among total viewers, behind ESPN. CNN and MSNBC ranked No. 25 and No. 24, respectively, in total day among cable networks, and No. 26 and No. 24, respectively, in primetime. TVNewser The return to Standard Time and the midterm elections combined to give all three network newscasts week-to-week gains. NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams also retook the lead in the adult 25-54 demo, which ABC’s World News Tonight With David Muir had owned for the last 11 weeks. Deadline Hollywood In the demo, Williams’ newscast clocked 2.19 million viewers to Muir’s 2.18 million; CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley drew 1.84 million demo viewers. NBC’s newscast also led among viewers of all ages: 9.45 million to ABC’s 8.76 million and CBS’ 7.25 million.

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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: Redbox Ends Streaming Service | Mukpo Returns to U.S.

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Redbox Ending Instant Streaming Service (THR)
Streaming video service Redbox Instant, a joint operation between Verizon Communications and Outerwall’s Redbox, is shutting down. Deadline Hollywood The statement announcing the shutdown read, “Thank you for being a part of Redbox Instant by Verizon. Please be aware that the service will be shut down on Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2014, at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time. Information on applicable refunds will be emailed to current customers and posted on Oct. 10. In the meantime, you may continue to stream movies and use your Redbox kiosk credits until Tuesday, Oct. 7 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time. We apologize for any inconvenience and we thank you for the opportunity to entertain you. Sincerely, The Redbox Instant by Verizon Team.” Variety Outerwall (then called Coinstar) and Verizon formed Redbox Instant by Verizon in February 2012, with Verizon owning 65 percent of the joint venture. The companies debuted the service in March 2013. Under the most recent subscription plan, the $6 monthly service provided access to 6,000 movies across different devices, as well as rentals and purchases of select titles. GigaOM The shutdown comes after the service had disabled new sign-ups for three months due to a credit card fraud issue, which not only prevented Redbox Instant from acquiring new customers, but also resulted in existing customers with expiring or revoked credit cards being booted from the service because they weren’t able to add any new payment information. Redbox Instant’s catalog was also significantly smaller than Netflix’s or even the Amazon Prime Instant streaming video catalog, and the service never really gained traction with consumers, leading the CEO of Outerwall to remark that both his company and Verizon were “not pleased” with the subscriber numbers. In that context, the credit card fraud issue may have just have been the final straw. Re/code But Verizon is not done playing around with video services. Earlier this year the company bought Intel’s never-launched Web TV business, and while it doesn’t look like it’s going to try launching that one itself, it is planning some sort of video service that it plans on delivering via phones and other mobile devices. Recently Verizon announced it had secured programming rights from Viacom, and promised to say more soon. Meanwhile both Sony and Dish Network say they plan on launching their own Web TV services this year; Sony has also announced a Viacom deal, while Dish has signed up Disney/ESPN, A&E and Scripps.

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Jon Steinberg on The MailOnline’s Plans for World Domination, New Hire Piers Morgan

LunchAtMichaelsIt was a true media mashup at Michael’s today as the joint was jam-packed with famous faces (Katie Couric and Barbara Walters at separate tables; Natalie Morales) and moguls (David Zinczenko), while the usual suspects upped the volume to near ear-splitting levels. I had to lean in to catch every word uttered by Jon Steinberg, who joined me for lunch to dish about his new-ish gig as CEO of the Daily Mail‘s MailOnline.com, yesterday’s announcement that Piers Morgan was joining the site and his old guard inspirations in this new-media world.

Diane Clehane and Jon Steinberg

Diane Clehane and Jon Steinberg

I suggested Jon and I do “Lunch” after I interviewed him earlier this year for a Gotham cover story I was doing on New York City’s most powerful millennials, for which he talked about his role in creating  BuzzFeed as its president and chief operating officer. During Steinberg’s tenure, BuzzFeed became a global brand and went from a staff of 15 to more than 500. Turns out our chat was fortuitously timed. Days before the story was set to go to press in May, Jon announced that after four years at the helm of the social news and entertainment site, he was stepping down to pursue his next big adventure. “Having built this place with Jonah [Peretti, BuzzFeed’s founder and CEO] and the rest of the team, I want to go through that rush again, and there is a certain amount of freedom that I want,” he said at the time. Since when we spoke for the Gotham piece, he’d told me he believed “freedom and independence are the new status symbols,” I was eager to see what his next move would be. A short time later, he announced he was joining MailOnline as chief executive officer of North America. Today he arrived fresh off the set of CNBC, where he appears three times a week as a contributor on Squawk on the Street. Said Jon of his television gig: “I love it because they operate it like a startup. They had the idea for it and just weeks later, it was on the air. It’s a great team.” But clearly, he’s even more enthusiastic about his top spot at MailOnline. “I wasn’t the CEO before and that’s something I’ve always wanted. I get to make a lot more decisions now,” he told me today, between bites of chicken paillard. And he’s making plenty.

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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: 550 Buyouts, Layoffs at Turner | Amazon Acquires Twitch

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550 Buyouts, Layoffs Imminent at Turner; HLN, CNN Among Cuts (The Wrap)
Some 550 buyouts are to be offered at Time Warner’s Turner network this week, including a large number of those at CNN and HLN, which will lead to layoffs if they are not taken voluntarily, according to an individual with knowledge of the network’s plans. TVNewser CNN chief Jeff Zucker will certainly want to protect CNN’s investment in original series and documentaries; the type of programming he’s gone all in on since taking the reins last year. Which departments and programming are affected by cuts remains to be seen. Variety Word of the staff cuts comes at a time when key Turner nets are at a crossroads. Turner’s entertainment networks are poised for a management overhaul following the departure in April of Steve Koonin as entertainment group chief. Meanwhile, CNN sibling HLN has been rumored to be in for a major makeover, possibly in a partnership deal between Time Warner and Vice Media. B&C The buyouts are part of the Time Warner unit’s efforts to cut costs as part of new CEO John Martin’s Turner 2020 plan aimed at cutting costs and aligning spending with company priorities. Turner officials had no comment, but sources said that the voluntary layoffs will be offered throughout Turner, including its news networks CNN and HLN, as well as its entertainment networks, including TNT and TBS. The company is not aiming at a specific headcount but rather is seeking to hit an expense number that includes personnel and other costs. THR The plan at Turner, which employs about 14,000 people worldwide, involves a formula that will allow workers at least age 55 and with a certain number of years seniority to take a buyout somewhat more generous than the usual two weeks of pay for every one year of service, according to a person familiar with the situation.

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