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Posts Tagged ‘NBC News’

Morning Media Newsfeed: Netflix Ups Global Expansion | Turner, CBS Prep for Dish Blackout

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Netflix to Expand to Australia, New Zealand (THR)
Netflix is continuing its march worldwide, unveiling plans on Tuesday to expand to Australia and New Zealand. The streaming service said that it will expand to those countries in March 2015. Variety Pricing for a subscription to Netflix in the countries will be announced “at a later date.” In a press release, Netflix said the Australia and New Zealand collection will include upcoming original series Marco Polo, animated BoJack Horseman and kids titles including DreamWorks Animation’s All Hail King Julien. Movies and TV shows will be available in high definition and in 4K where possible. GigaOM The launch will bring the number of countries Netflix is available in to more than 50 and the announcement is not unexpected: Netflix CFO David Wells said earlier this month that the company plans a “sizeable expansion” for 2015 and Netflix has reportedly been preparing to enter Australia by hiring local agencies for a launch campaign. WSJ He said over the next three to five years, Netflix believes it is possible to generate 50 percent of its revenues from countries outside the U.S., up from about 28 percent now. Assuming that Netflix signs up 10 percent of broadband households outside the U.S., Wells says, it is possible for the company to have about 50 million to 60 million non-U.S. subscribers or even more. The company had 14.4 million international paying customers at the end of the third quarter, compared with 36.3 million U.S. customers. Deadline The initiative positions Netflix for an interesting fight: Only about 30 percent of Australian households subscribe to pay TV, far less than in the U.S. and even less than in the U.K., where about half subscribe. Australia’s leading distributor, Foxtel, expected to see some competition from streaming services and recently halved the price of its basic service.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Horowitz Out at NBC News | Charles Champlin Dies at 88

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Jamie Horowitz Out at NBC News (TVNewser)
Jamie Horowitz, the recently-hired SVP and GM of the Today show, is no longer with NBC News. A source tells us Horowitz and his boss, NBC News president Deborah Turness, were not seeing eye to eye, leading to Horowitz’s departure from the network late Monday. THR / The Live Feed Originally set to join the network in December, Horowitz started taking meetings at Today in September, overseeing the network’s flagship morning show. Variety “He’s a talented producer and executive, but, together, he and I have come to the conclusion that this is not the right fit,” Turness said in a memo to staffers. In the wake of Horowitz’ departure, Turness said, she will continue working closely with Don Nash, the executive producer of Today, and Jen Brown, the vice president and general manager of Today.com. She expects to find a new general manager of Today, she said. Deadline Hollywood In August, NBC agreed to let Bill Wolff, VP primetime programs at MSNBC and executive producer of The Rachel Maddow Show, out of his contract to move to ABC, in order to get that parent company to allow top ESPN programmer Horowitz take the helm at Today. Before joining ESPN, Horowitz worked at NBC Sports; he started his TV career as an NBC Olympics researcher. Turness came to the network from the U.K. in August 2013 to help turn around the news division’s once-dominant but now struggling franchises. NYT Early reports of new turbulence at Today were especially upsetting for NBC News because the show is the news division’s biggest profit center, and NBC has been touting a comeback in the ratings for the show, which has trailed ABC’s Good Morning America since Today lost a seemingly impregnable lead in the morning ratings in 2012. Turness has been portrayed as embattled in some reports, and Horowitz’s name surfaced quickly as a possible successor, despite his short tenure and the fact that he has no network news background.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: DWA, Hasbro Merger Talks End | The Onion Exploring Sale

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DreamWorks Animation, Hasbro End Merger Talks (THR)
Hasbro has called off merger negotiations with DreamWorks Animation, sources say. The deal chatter, which became public on Wednesday, appears to have been derailed in part by the performance of Hasbro’s stock and potentially the high price sought by DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg. WSJ News last week that the toy maker was in early acquisition talks with the film studio drove the two companies’ stocks in opposite directions. Hasbro investors sent the toy company’s share price down more than 4 percent on Thursday and nearly 2 percent on Friday, when they settled at $54.02 on Nasdaq. Adweek DreamWorks reportedly wanted $30 per share, a relatively steep incline for stock trading at roughly $22. NYT / DealBook Also playing a role was a negative private reaction by the Walt Disney Company, which comprises roughly 30 percent of Hasbro’s business through licenses for Star Wars, Marvel characters, Frozen and the Disney Princesses toy line. Variety Neither side has officially commented on why the talks fell apart, nor the potential of a deal. Hasbro follows recent conversations DWA has had to sell the toon studio. In September, it discussed such a sale with Japanese tech giant SoftBank, that also ended just days later.

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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: CNN Broadcasts to End in Russia | Obama Defends Net Neutrality

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CNN to End Broadcasts on Russian Cable, Satellite TV (USA Today)
CNN will not be seen on channels in Russia beginning next year, Turner Broadcasting said Monday. “Turner International is assessing its distribution options for CNN in Russia in light of recent changes in Russian media legislation,” the company said in a written statement. “We are bringing our existing distribution relationships to an end while we do that.” FishbowlDC The decision comes in the wake of an advertising ban on Russian cable and satellite TV stations. TVNewser The network’s newsgathering in Russia will not be impacted. CNN has been available to Russian viewers since the early 1990s. HuffPost / Reuters Russia launched on Monday a state-of-the-art media organization with hundreds of journalists abroad intended to wean the world off what it called aggressive Western propaganda — dubbing it with echoes of the Cold War, Sputnik. In a hi-tech presentation in a media center once used to host Cold War-era press conferences, one of President Vladimir Putin’s favorite journalists outlined plans meant to repair the damage done to Russia’s image during the crisis in Ukraine. Although Moscow denies reverting to Soviet-style techniques, Russian media executives acknowledge privately they are waging a propaganda war with echoes of the Cold War. The Guardian Meanwhile, Russia Today has been threatened with statutory sanctions by media regulator Ofcom after the Kremlin-backed news channel breached broadcasting regulations on impartiality with its coverage of the Ukraine crisis. Russia Today, or RT, was summoned to a meeting with Ofcom after it was found guilty of breaching the code governing U.K. broadcasters in a ruling published on Monday.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: ABC News to Oversee The View | NYT Reports Loss

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The View to Be Overseen by ABC News (TVNewser)
The View is moving from the entertainment unit of ABC to the non-fiction programming group of ABC News. THR New ABC News head James Goldston, who will now oversee The View, announced the move in a staff memo sent out on Thursday morning. Goldston is largely responsible for Good Morning America’s transformation to a multi-anchor ensemble, which helped the ABC morning show end NBC rival Today’s 16-year morning-news ratings winning streak. He’s also responsible for remaking Nightline into a multi-anchor, multi-topic program in the wake of Ted Koppel’s retirement. HuffPost / AP Following the retirement of Barbara Walters from an on-air role at the show she started, ABC brought in Rosie O’Donnell, Nicolle Wallace and Rosie Perez to join holdover Whoopi Goldberg. A new production team was named, led by Bill Wolff, Rachel Maddow’s former producer. Capital New York Still, after a strong first week, the program has begun to slip in the ratings. For the week of Oct. 12, CBS’ The Talk, which is clearly based on the format of The View, matched the program in two key demos: women 25-54 and women 18-49. Variety One of Goldston’s central goals, according to insiders, is to make The View more appealing to younger viewers. The show has fallen 10 percent in the last year among female viewers between the ages of 18 to 49, but it’s up 1 percent in total viewers.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: ISIS Releases New Cantlie Video | Condé Nast Reshuffles Digital

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New ISIS Video Shows Hostage John Cantlie Allegedly Reporting From Kobani (Vice News)
In a new video published Monday, British photojournalist John Cantlie, who is now being held hostage by the Islamic State after being kidnapped in Syria in 2012, appears to be reporting from the city of Kobani on the Syrian-Turkish border, which has been the stage to an ongoing battle between the militants and Kurdish forces. HuffPost The five-minute video, which is titled “Inside Ayn al-Islam,” shows Cantlie walking in front of destroyed buildings in what appears to be Kobani. After mentioning international reports of Islamic State losses in the battle for the town, Cantlie says Kobani is about to fall completely into the militants’ hands. NBC News But U.S. counterterrorism officials said that while the undated video apparently was shot in Kobani, Cantlie’s assertion that ISIS controls large swathes of the city is false. “We don’t know when this was recorded,” said one official, who like the others spoke on condition of anonymity. “But to suggest that the ISIL (another acronym for ISIS) is in control of the city now is not accurate.” Mashable It’s widely assumed that Cantlie, who’s appeared in at least five propaganda videos since he disappeared, is reading from remarks that were prepared by his captors. Having rid the region of all independent journalists, it appears the group is now attempting to broadcast its own twisted form of journalism. The Guardian The video comes two days after the release of another video, in which Cantlie said that captives have been waterboarded for trying to escape.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: AMC Buys Stake in BBC America | CNN Announces High Profits

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AMC Networks Buys 49.9 Percent Stake in BBC America (TVNewser)
AMC Networks has agreed to purchase a 49.9 percent stake in BBC America from BBC Worldwide for $200 million. AMC Networks will look for greater distribution for BBC World News in the U.S. B&C BBC Worldwide will retain a 50.1 percent equity stake in the cable channel, while AMC Networks will have operational control of BBCA, including affiliate and advertising sales, though it will still be consistent with BBC’s editorial standards and policies. THR The cable networks company and the commercial arm of U.K. public broadcaster BBC announced the deal Thursday after reports of their talks first emerged over the summer. The channel airs such BBC favorites as Doctor Who, Sherlock, Top Gear and Planet Earth. AMC Networks operates the AMC, Sundance, WE tv and IFC channels, and can now add the so-far independent BBC America when it negotiates carriage fees, giving both partners increased leverage in talks with pay-TV operators. WSJ The deal comes as the biggest pay-TV distributors are consolidating, prompting analyst speculation that content players will also have to seek greater scale. Variety Executives at both companies portrayed the arrangement as one borne out of a desire to gain greater reach for premium content that attracts high-income audiences. The two sides have worked together in the recent past. The two have collaborated on series including Top of The Lake and The Honourable Woman as well as the coming program One Child. AMC Networks and BBC Television have agreed to continue to jointly pursue a number of content investment opportunities on a range of future projects, both through BBC America and other AMC Networks channels. BBC America is to be managed as a standalone asset within AMC’s portfolio.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Snyderman Back to NBC | World News Skips Midterm Coverage

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Despite Criticism, Dr. Nancy Snyderman Will Return to NBC News (TVNewser)
NBC News chief medical correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman will return to work, but it won’t be until next month. NBC News president Deborah Turness informed the network’s employees of the decision in an internal email Wednesday evening. CNNMoney The timing is noteworthy because Snyderman’s apparent violation of a voluntary quarantine scared some members of her New Jersey community and stoked a major controversy earlier this month. Questions about her credibility have lingered and she has not addressed those questions publicly. The Washington Post / Erik Wemple In the memo, Turness celebrates the recovery of freelance cameraman Ashoka Mukpo and the impending end of the 21-day quarantine binding on Snyderman and NBC News crew members who reported several weeks ago from Liberia. “While in Liberia Dr. Nancy and her team delivered first class, first-hand reporting from the front lines of this tragic and monumental story,” writes Turness. While with Snyderman and co. in Africa, Mukpo contracted the Ebola virus and was flown to a Nebraska hospital. Deadline Hollywood Tuesday, Mukpo, officially declared Ebola-free by experts at the Nebraska Medical Center bio-containment unit, celebrated by attempting to rescue Snyderman from the career-nuking situation she created when she violated the voluntary quarantine she’d agreed to, on-air, tweeting “Be nice to her plz.” TVNewser Expect to see Mukpo on NBC News. The network is already promoting “exclusive interviews” with him.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Ben Bradlee Dies at 93 | Pew Finds Partisan News Consumption

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Former Washington Post Editor Ben Bradlee Dies at 93 (FishbowlDC)
Former editor of The Washington Post Ben Bradlee died Tuesday of natural causes at the age of 93 at his home in Washington. Bradley served as executive editor of The Washington Post from 1968-1991, a time that included the resignation of President Richard Nixon and the Watergate scandal. The Washington Post Bradlee’s most important decision, made with publisher Katharine Graham, the Post’s publisher, may have been to print stories based on the Pentagon Papers, a secret Pentagon history of the Vietnam War. The Post’s circulation nearly doubled while Bradlee was in charge of the newsroom — first as managing editor and then as executive editor — as did the size of its newsroom staff. NYT With full backing from Graham, Bradlee led the Post into the first rank of American newspapers, courting controversy and giving it standing as a thorn in the side of Washington officials. When government officials called to complain, Bradlee acted as a buffer between them and his staff. “Just get it right,” he would tell his reporters. Most of the time they did, but there were mistakes, one so big that the paper had to return a Pulitzer Prize. Boston Globe It was Bradlee who guided the Post through its coverage of the Watergate scandal — “the story of our generation,” he later called it, “the story that put us all on the map” — and his unwavering leadership was crucial to the success of the paper’s investigations during the nine months between the break-in at Democratic National Committee headquarters on June 17, 1972, and the sentencing of the Watergate burglars on March 23, 1973, a period during which the Post was far out in front of the rest of the media in covering the scandal and, as a result, dangerously exposed to criticism from the Nixon administration. Reuters Bradlee’s death at his Washington home of natural causes was announced by the Post, which reported late last month that he had begun hospice care after suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for several years.

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