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Posts Tagged ‘Maker Studios’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Tribune Rebrands | Gannett to Split, Buy Cars.com

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Tribune Gets New Name Ahead of Split (TVSpy)
Tribune Company began operating under a new, but similar, name Monday: Tribune Media Company. The rebranding came as the broadcasting and publishing divisions of the 167-year-old company split. TVNewser Tribune Media Company includes Tribune Broadcasting, WGN America, Tribune Studios, Tribune Digital Ventures and Tribune Real Estate. Variety The overhaul comes with a new logo and corporate website. Tribune has labored under the cloud of bankruptcy and plunging ad revenues for years, leading to its fissure into two companies. Tribune’s papers, which include the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, will begin trading Tuesday as a new company, Tribune Publishing. It will be listed under the symbol TPUB on the New York Stock Exchange. It has been saddled with $350 million in debt and faces a cloudy future as revenues and readership of newspapers continue to decline. THR Tribune Media CEO Peter Liguori has said the separation will allow investors to put money into either the broadcast or print assets of Tribune, or both. The spinoff is mindful of the split of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and 21st Century Fox. USA Today Tribune’s shareholders receive a quarter of a share of Tribune Publishing’s common stock for each Tribune share they own. After years of management turmoil and dealing with heavy debt, Tribune, based in Chicago, emerged from a four-year bankruptcy process in early 2013 with the intent to focus on broadcasting. In July 2013, Tribune announced early plans to spin off the publishing unit that would operate on its own without affecting the financial performance of its other, more profitable businesses.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: AT&T Advances DirecTV Talks | AP Expands | BuzzFeed President Out

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AT&T Said to Be in Talks to Buy DirecTV for About $50 Billion (Bloomberg)
AT&T Inc. is in advanced talks to acquire DirecTV, the largest U.S. satellite-TV provider, for about $100 per share, according to people familiar with the matter. WSJ A takeover of DirecTV could put a value of nearly $50 billion on the satellite-television provider. The two sides are discussing a deal that would involve a mix of cash and AT&T stock, the people said. Dallas-based AT&T would likely pay a premium to DirecTV’s share price Monday, one of the people said. An agreement could be reached in two weeks if not sooner, according to the people. GigaOM AT&T’s plan is to turn the satellite company into an AT&T unit, and keep management on board to run that unit, with plans for DirecTV’s chief executive Mike White to retire in 2016. The acquisition report, which neither company is commenting on, comes after three months after Comcast announced that it was going to acquire Time Warner Cable in a $45 billion deal. Variety Analysts have speculated that AT&T could migrate its 5.7 million U-verse TV subscribers to DirecTV’s satellite-delivered service, freeing up bandwidth in its terrestrial data networks. With 26 million pay-TV subscribers, AT&T also would gain leverage in programming negotiations on part with a merged Comcast-TWC. Reuters DirecTV shares rose 6 percent to $92.50 in extended trading on Monday.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: CBS News Taps Capus | MSNBC Apologizes | Disney’s Earnings Soar

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Steve Capus Named Executive Producer of CBS Evening News (TVNewser)
Former NBC News president Steve Capus is joining CBS News as the executive producer of CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley and executive editor of the news division. He will begin in his new role in July. Capital New York Capus is no stranger to the evening news beat. He served four years as executive producer of the NBC Nightly News With Brian Williams before taking over NBC’s news division in 2005. Capus is currently an “executive in residence” at IESE Business School at the University of Navarra, a role he will continue in after he joins CBS. HuffPost / AP Capus left NBC in 2013 after eight years as president of the news division, part of a turnover triggered by troubles at the Today show. He was Tom Brokaw’s last executive producer at NBC’s Nightly News and is close to Williams, whom he will now compete with each night. Capus will also have broader responsibilities as executive editor of CBS News, behind chairman Jeff Fager and president David Rhodes. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media His appointment has raised internal speculation that he’s in line to succeed Rhodes, perhaps as early as next year. Several CBS News sources believe that Les Moonves, the chairman and CEO of CBS Corp., tapped Capus in order to position him for that role. THR Rhodes and Capus have been in discussions for several months with more specific talks about the Evening News role evolving over the last few weeks. The broadcast has been on a rating uptick since Pelley took over; notching a gain of 6 percent so far this season among total viewers. But it is still stuck in third behind Nightly News and ABC World News With Diane Sawyer.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: FB Launches Newswire | Vice Reporter Freed | NYT Revenue Up

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Facebook Teams With Storyful to Launch FB Newswire for Journalists, Media Outlets (AllFacebook)
Facebook has become a virtual newsroom of sorts, with a recent study by the Pew Research Center’s Journalism Project finding that three out of 10 U.S. adults get at least some news while on Facebook and 78 percent of Facebook users see news while navigating the site. Now, the social network is aiming to become an invaluable resource for journalists and media organizations, announcing that it teamed up with social content discovery outfit Storyful to launch FB Newswire. TechCrunch FB Newswire promises to offer journalists a repository of verified, real-time content for use in covering breaking news stories. Storyful’s purpose was to verify news sources from social sites including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and the FB Newsroom version of its tech continues that mission, with the aim of making Facebook a more useful resource for journalists and news publications. GigaOM Storyful was acquired by News Corp. in December for $25 million. FB Newswire will highlight content that has been posted by users and media entities who are reporting on breaking news events around the world, and comes complete with an easy-to-use “embed” function. Mashable The agency will use an algorithm to find popular and breaking news stories on Facebook in categories like sports, entertainment, tech and politics. Facebook is also releasing a Twitter handle for the service, called @FBNewswire, along with the feed. Poynter / MediaWire The company recently hired Liz Heron from The Wall Street Journal to facilitate partnerships between Facebook and news organizations. The FB Newswire page will be publicly accessible but is “100 percent” aimed at journalists, Facebook director of news and global media partnerships Andy Mitchell said. “The format on the page will feel like a wire,” he said.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: García Márquez Dead at 87 | Whoopi Gets New Gig | Wallace Re-Signs

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Gabriel García Márquez, Nobel Laureate, Dies at 87 (GalleyCat)
Colombian author Gabriel García Márquez passed away Thursday. He was 87 years old. Time The Nobel Prize-winning author was hospitalized for nine days in late March for an infection in his lungs and urinary tract. He had been recovering in his home in Mexico City since April 8. NYT His death was confirmed by Cristóbal Pera, his former editor at Random House. García Márquez, who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982, wrote fiction rooted in a mythical Latin American landscape of his own creation, but his appeal was universal. His books were translated into dozens of languages. He was among a select roster of canonical writers — Dickens, Tolstoy and Hemingway among them — who were embraced both by critics and a mass audience. The Guardian Journalists gathered outside García Márquez’s house in Mexico City in the hope that one of the family members who was reportedly at his side would emerge. Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto expressed sadness at the death of “one of the greatest writers of our time,” in the name of Mexico, the novelist’s adopted home. Chilean writer Luis Sepúlveda was quoted by the Mexican newspaper Reforma as saying that he was “the most important writer in Spanish of the 20th century.” WSJ Born in the sleepy town of Aracataca, Colombia, García Márquez was best known for his 1967 masterpiece, One Hundred Years of Solitude. In a career spanning more than 60 years, García Márquez wrote some of the Spanish language’s most revered books, many of which became best sellers in the U.S. They included Autumn of The Patriarch, Chronicle of A Death Foretold, Love in The Time of Cholera and The General in His Labyrinth. García Márquez was also an accomplished journalist, whose lyrical, deeply reported stories first caught the eye of readers in Colombia’s capital, Bogotá, in the early 1950s. He later became renowned not only his profiles of presidents and despots but for the real-life close ties he cultivated with leaders ranging from Fidel Castro to Bill Clinton to François Mitterrand.

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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: Colbert to Late Show | CNN Revamps Primetime | ABC News Ups Goldston

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Stephen Colbert to Succeed David Letterman as Host of The Late Show (TVNewser)
It’s official: Stephen Colbert will take over as the host of CBS’ The Late Show when David Letterman retires next year. Specifics of Colbert’s show — including the premiere date, producers and location — will be determined after the timeline is decided for Letterman’s retirement, CBS said. Capital New York The rank and file at The Colbert Report, his Comedy Central show, are operating on the assumption they are invited to follow the comedian to staff The Late Show and stay in New York, someone familiar with Colbert’s transition plan said. Variety When Colbert sits behind the desk of the CBS program, he will do it with a new presentation — not as the right-wing caricature he plays in his current perch on Comedy Central. “He is not going to play that character,” said Nina Tassler, chairman of CBS Entertainment, in an interview. THR / The Live Feed The Colbert Report, which launched in 2005, has earned an Emmy win for outstanding variety series (2013) and three Emmy wins for writing for a variety, music or comedy program (2013, 2010, 2008). Before that, Colbert spent eight years as a correspondent on Comedy Central’s The Daily Show With Jon Stewart as an on-air personality and writer of news satire. He also has written two books — I Am America (And So Can You!) and America Again: Re-Becoming The Greatness We Never Weren’t — and won a Grammy for spoken word for America Again earlier this year. Mashable Several media outlets quoted network executives saying the deal came together quickly after Letterman’s retirement, including breakneck negotiations with several candidates. Craig Ferguson, whose Late Late Show comes on after Letterman’s, was never seen as a true contender for the slot; it remains to be seen whether he’ll stick around after being passed over. Other names thrown in the mix were Chelsea Handler and Neil Patrick Harris — but even as top contenders, they were dark horses at best. For nearly 18 months, Colbert was always CBS’ guy.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Sweeney’s Successor | Weiner to Pen Column at BI | Bartiromo Given FNC Show

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Disney Names Ben Sherwood as Anne Sweeney’s Successor (THR)
ABC News president Ben Sherwood has been named Anne Sweeney’s successor as co-chairman of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney/ABC Television Group. He’ll officially take over the role on Feb. 1, 2015. TVNewser Sherwood will begin the transition immediately and take on the role of co-president of Disney/ABC while also overseeing ABC News until his successor is named. Variety Sherwood was a front-runner for the job ever since Sweeney shocked industry on March 11 when she announced she was resigning as of January 2015 to pursue a career as a television director. Sherwood steered the rise of Good Morning America and brokered deals like ABC News’ partnership with Yahoo!. He will also serve as co-chairman of Disney Media Networks alongside ESPN’s John Skipper. NYT Among Sherwood’s first decisions — with oversight from Disney chairman Bob Iger and Sweeney — will be the choice of his own successor in the news division. “We have a deep bench of leaders at ABC News,” he said. The standout candidate for that job is James Goldston, the senior vice president of ABC News who has been instrumental first in the revival of the late-night program Nightline and then in the rise of GMAWSJ Sherwood was named president of ABC News in December 2010. He is responsible for all aspects of ABC News’ broadcasts. In addition, Sherwood oversees ABC News Radio, ABCnews.com, satellite service NewsOne and ABC News Now. ABC News reaches a combined audience of well over 270 million people a month on television, on radio and online, and is enjoying significant audience growth driven by a creative renaissance and innovative deal-making. In addition, during Sherwood’s tenure, the news division has won the most prestigious honors in the industry.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Ferns Plugs Obamacare | Sweeney Steps Down | Reporter Dies in Uganda

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White House: Obama’s Between Two Ferns Cameo Driving Traffic to HealthCare.gov (The Washington Post / Post Politics)
The White House said in a tweet early Tuesday afternoon that President Obama’s appearance on the Funny or Die Web series Between Two Ferns With Zach Galifianakis has made that website the top referrer to HealthCare.gov. Politico As of 1 p.m. ET Tuesday, the website had racked up more than 19,000 referral visits from Obama’s Between Two Ferns video, which was posted around 7 a.m., Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services spokesman Aaron Albright said. But those who clicked through from the video to HealthCare.gov represent just a small percentage of those who watched the video. Around 1 p.m., the video had drawn about 3 million views through Funny or Die’s video player. By 6 p.m., the total was around 7 million. Reuters In the video, Obama got the chance to urge the youth of America to get health insurance, but not until he’d been subjected to questions like “What is it like to be the last black president?” and “What should be done about North Ikea?” Youth participation is crucial to the success of the program, but U.S. government data released on Tuesday showed that while the number of people enrolled in private insurance under Obamacare reached 4.2 million by March 1, the proportion of adults aged 18-34 remained unchanged from January at 25 percent of total enrollment in private Obamacare plans. Variety At Tuesday’s briefing, White House press secretary Jay Carney was grilled by the White House press corps on whether the video demeaned the dignity of the office. “I think we made the right call here,” Carney said. “I think what it says is gone are the days when your broadcasts can reach everybody we need to reach.” He noted that Between Two Ferns videos average 6 million views, and that he expected the Obama interview would exceed that. He declined to say exactly which parts of the interview were scripted and which ones were not. THR During Obama’s six-and-a-half-minute back-and-forth with Galifianakis, the president played the role of a stern, sometimes irritated straight man as the comedian deadpanned a series of questions that were alternately outrageous and inane. “This is a perfect example of a great partnership with Funny or Die stepping up in a big way,” said Between Two Ferns producer Eric Ortner. “The site has a very robust traffic base of young men and women who are on the edge of the cultural zeitgeist.” PRNewser Will the people who hate the president’s health care law see this clip and change their minds? Of course not. The point, really, is that this appearance was far more valuable than any Sunday morning show discussion could be, no matter what Obama’s opponents think. We all know that the key to successful communication is to deliver the message to the right audience in the best possible format, which for young people is not Sunday morning on NBC with David Gregory.

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Maker Studios Co-Founder Acquires NewMediaRockstars

Not too long ago, like everyone else in the Web video content media space, newmediarockstars.com was covering the turmoil at Maker Studios and the exit of CEO Danny Zappin. Today, Zappin is on the site again but this time in a completely different context, under the headline “I Guess That Fortune Cookie Was Right”.

Zappin has purchased all assets of NMR from founding investor Ryan Devitis. And he’s got big plans:

NMR original CEO Benny Luo, who had left to work on other startups, returns to the site as president, and will retain an ownership stake in the business. NMR editorial chief Alan Van will continue at NMR in the editor role.

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