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Posts Tagged ‘Jon Fine’

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Texas Monthly Sues Times Co. Over New Hire (NYT)
The publisher of Texas Monthly filed a lawsuit on Friday against The New York Times Company related to the Times’ hiring of the magazine’s departing editor-in-chief, Jake Silverstein. FishbowlNY Emmis Publishing is claiming that the Times influenced Silverstein into breaching his contract. The lawsuit states that Silverstein’s contract expires in February of next year. NY Post The six-page Texas state court action alleges that Times executive editor Jill Abramson started recruiting Silverstein in December 2012 — a full year before then-magazine editor Hugo Lindgren was ousted. Greg Loewen, president of Emmis, said the company has been “damaged by the Times and expects to be compensated.” Capital New York The suit, which seeks damages between $200,000 and $1 million, names only the Times, not Silverstein, as previously reported. Loewen said the company never intended to stand in the way of Silverstein’s pursuit of the Times Magazine editorship. Loewen said that after Silverstein told his employer last month that he was being considered for the job, Emmis notified the Times that they would have to reach a settlement on the termination of his contract with Emmis to account for the costs associated with finding Silverstein’s replacement, as well as the damage of losing a star editor. New York Magazine / Daily Intelligencer In a statement, Emmis said, “No such agreement was reached and, to date, the Times has refused to even participate in settlement discussions despite numerous attempts” by Emmis to do so.

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Inc. Changes at the Top

Jim Ledbetter has been editor of Inc. for only a little over three months, but he’s already found his executive editor. The New York Post is reporting that Jon Fine is joining Inc. in May to take on the role.

Fine — husband of Mediabistro founder Laurel Touby — is a veteran media journalist, having spent nine years at Ad Age and Businessweek. He also spent a year as editorial director of Magnum Photos. Fine has been busy writing a memoir about his time in the indie rock scene. The book — due out next year — carries the fantastic title of Your Band Sucks.

In other Inc. news, David Whitford is returning to the magazine as editor-at-large. Whitford wrote for Inc. before leaving for Fortune in the late 90s.

John Byrne BusinessWeek Departure Rumors Turn True

johnbyrne .jpgWhen false reports of the deaths of Lady Gaga or Jeff Goldblum get blasted all over Twitter, it becomes a trend piece in The New York Times. “The Internet Who Cried Wolf” serves as a gentle reminder that not everything you read online is true.

The media equivalent of course, would be Anna Wintour‘s departure from Vogue. There have been so many rumors, sworn testimonies and first-hand accounts of the editrix leaving Condé Nast that sometimes it seems like she’s hanging on there just to spite the morning’s headlines.

But recently, the magazine departure watchdogs have had a new person of interest: BusinessWeek.com‘s editor-in-chief John Byrne. Except this time, the gossipers were right. Turns out, Byrne is leaving the Bloomberg LP-owned business magazine to launch a digital media company in San Francisco.

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More On This Week’s BusinessWeek Layoffs

businessweek cover new.jpgTo say it’s been a rough week for BusinessWeek would be an understatement. Yesterday, the axe fell hard, and new parent Bloomberg LP has cut around 130 people for the business mag’s staff — including 60 to 70 from the edit side.

Among those getting pink slips were big names like media columnist Jon Fine, community manager Shirley Brady and tech writers Steve Wildstrom and Stephen Baker.

Business journalism blog Talking Biz News has kept a running tally of outgoing BusinessWeekers since yesterday, and today has an updated list. Blogger Chris Roush says senior writer Pete Engardio, Atlanta bureau chief Dean Foust, Philadelphia bureau chief Amy Barrett, management department editor Jena McGregor, associate editor Hardy Green, senior editor James Cooper, senior photo editor Kathy Moore and Prudence Crowther, head of the copy desk, will not be making the transition to Bloomberg’s BusinessWeek.

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Media Columnist Among BusinessWeek Casualties

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Today, we have been following the tweets of departing BusinessWeek writers and editors as they get word from the bosses at Bloomberg LP about layoffs.

Although we knew no one was safe, we were shocked to learn that media columnist Jon Fine, who has been enjoying a six-month sabbatical since September, would not be returning to the magazine after it gets taken over by its new parent. So what will become of respected media reporter Fine and his column Fine on Media?

The sad irony of the situation is that the magazine’s own media columnist missed the opportunity to cover the sale of BusinessWeek, a deal that ultimately ended up eliminating his job. But we have a feeling that when Fine returns from his travels abroad, he won’t have trouble finding some place to write about the media and the new Bloomberg-owned BusinessWeek.

Update: We asked Fine if he had any regrets about taking his sabbatical when he did. “I have absolutely no regrets,” he told us, while enjoying a burger at Peter Luger. “We had a chance to do it, to go around the world and talk to media people on the ground. And that’s going to serve us well no matter what.”

Fine and wife Laurel Touby wrapped up the first leg of their worldwide tour earlier this month, and they’re planning to depart to places unknown in early December.

Follow all the BusinessWeek layoffs tweets here.

Earlier: Jon Fine Says Goodbye

Jon Fine Leaves Business Week

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Business Week columnist Jon Fine just announced via Twitter that he won’t be returning. Fine’s wife is the founder of Mediabistro Laurel Touby.

Departing BusinessWeek Tweets

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News of this week’s layoffs at BusinessWeek is starting to trickle on to Twitter.

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Looks like technology editor Steve Wildstrom and innovation and design writer Damian Joseph are among laid off by new owner Bloomberg LP. Good luck guys!

We’ll keep updating with Twitter news, but if you know of anyone else who got dumped by BusinessWeek (as Joseph says), drop us a line

Update: More tweets after the jump

Earlier: Bloomberg Looks To Cut BusinessWeek Staffers

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Exit Interview: Mediabistro Founder Laurel Touby

IMG_0196.jpgAnyone who comes to mediabistro.com for media news, job postings or classes has Laurel Touby to thank. She started the company in 1994 as a series of media mixers, which led to the founding of a Web site in 1996 — before the dotcom bubble burst. Over the years, Touby navigated uncharted territory as a digital entrepreneur and Internet pioneer, obtaining funding from venture capitalists and eventually selling the company just over two years ago.

When she sold her baby to Jupitermedia (now WebMediaBrands) for $23 million in July 2007, Touby signed a two-year contract. When that ran out a couple of months ago, she became a contractor for the company. Although she stayed involved in the day to day of mediabistro.com, she also started planning her getaway with her husband, BusinessWeek media columnist Jon Fine.

Earlier this month, the couple announced something big: a six-month sabbatical that they plan to spend traveling the globe, visiting foreign countries, blogging and — not surprisingly if you know these two — doing a little work here and there. But not too much. That’s not the point after all.

“I just feel like I’ve really gone balls to the wall for so many years and I just wanted a break, a real serious break, so I could come back fresh and renewed with new ideas and a new vision from this travel around the world,” Touby said. “Who knows what that vision will be.”

We couldn’t resist asking Touby a few parting questions as she headed out the door after 15 years at Mediabistro. In this exit interview of sorts — conducted via phone as Touby and Fine explored the Piedmont region in Italy one week after leaving New York — Touby opened up about her proudest moments, her regrets and her plans for the future.

“I have some ideas,” she said of her future plans. “But nothing has gelled yet.”

FishbowlNY: Why did you decide to take this sabbatical?

Laurel Touby: I’ve been looking forward to taking an extended break because I haven’t taken a real vacation since I started the company in 1994. I really have been going full speed ahead, always worried, always kind of logged in at home. Even if I was away from the office or “on vacation,” I was always doing work constantly just like anyone who is tethered electronically to their job. Only this was my responsibility and I felt very much like it was a child in many ways. You feel this maternal feeling towards this company that you’ve started, especially as a woman. And especially as a woman with no other children.

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Bloomberg “Most Aggressive” Bidder For BusinessWeek

businessweek cover.jpgAlthough BusinessWeek‘s media columnist Jon Fine has already departed for his six-month sabbatical, his publication is still closely tracking its own sale.

Bids for the business magazine were due yesterday to BusinessWeek‘s owner McGraw-Hill, and at least four parties have submitted revised bids, according to Tom Lowry, who has taken over Fine’s “On Media” column:

“Among those submitting revised bids were financial data giant Bloomberg LP, private equity firm Open Gate Capital, and investment firm ZelnickMedia LLC. At least one other bidder, which BusinessWeek was not able to identify, also submitted a bid.”

Although details of the bids are unknown, Lowry said Bloomberg has been “the most aggressive in its pursuit of BusinessWeek.” According to Lowry, Bloomberg’s chief content officer Norm Pearlstine met with various members of the BusinessWeek editorial team last week, including editor-in-chief Stephen Adler, executive editors Ellen Pollock and John Byrne and Ciro Scotti, BusinessWeek‘s managing editor. These meetings discussed topics like the possibility of integrating content from Bloomberg into the magazine and adding more editorial pages to the book, which “suggests Bloomberg might be looking at tinkering with BusinessWeek‘s traditional 60-40 mix of editorial pages to ad pages,” Lowry said.

Right now, it’s all speculation. The sales process is just at the beginning, but we’re bound to learn more as it progresses. But a successful media company like Bloomberg taking over the reins of a struggling pub like BusinessWeek certainly seems promising, even if the editorial mix of the mag may change in the future. If BusinessWeek survives in any form, and jobs are saved, it’s better than the fate suffered by other magazines, like Portfolio.

BusinessWeek Accepts Revised Bids From Potential BuyersBusinessWeek

Earlier: Getting The Skinny On The BusinessWeek Deal As Bid Deadline Looms

Jon Fine Says Goodbye

fine.jpgToday, BusinessWeek media columnist Jon Fine said his goodbyes before jetting off on a six-month sabbatical with his wife, Mediabistro.com founder Laurel Touby. Although he seemed excited about his adventures, Fine said he would miss his readers most of all:

“The biggest surprise to me about this whole taking-time-off thing is how hard it is to step away from the keyboard with the knowledge that it’s going to be a while before I come back and hang out here with you all again. Really. I can’t adequately convey how much I will miss your comments, your challenges, your wit, your exasperation with my lazier moments, and, more than anything, the attention that you’ve so kindly granted me. ‘Privilege’ is an overused word. But it’s also the only one that seems appropriate in this situation.”

Ron Grover and Tom Lowry will be updating Fine’s “Fine On Media” column while he is away. Lowry has already taken up the BusinessWeek sale beat, reporting yesterday that investment firm ZelnickMedia LLC and L. Gordon Crovitz, former publisher of The Wall Street Journal are in talks to make a play to buy the business mag.

It seems like every day there is news of another media reporter leaving the fray, so the loss of Fine will not go unnoticed. He may be missing out on some of the biggest stories in his career as he departs amid the BusinessWeek sale, but hopefully there will still be a magazine for him to come back to when he’s done globetrotting.

A Note Before I Dash Out The DoorBusinessWeek

Earlier: Mediabistro Founder Announces Sabbatical

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