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Morning Media Newsfeed: ISIS Claims to Execute Journalist | Condé Nast Sells Fairchild

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Kidnapped Journalist, Apparently Executed by ISIS (NBC News)
The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) claims to have beheaded an American photojournalist and has threatened the life of another American journalist if President Obama doesn’t stop airstrikes in Iraq. TVNewser In a gruesome video, James Wright Foley, a freelance journalist for Global Post, is apparently beheaded by ISIS militants. The militants claim they are also holding journalist Steven Soltoff. HuffPost The YouTube video and photos purportedly of Foley emerged on Tuesday. Titled “A Message to #America (from the #IslamicState),” the video identified a man on his knees as “James Wright Foley” and showed his beheading. “This is James Wright Foley, an American citizen of your country,” an Islamic State militant says in the video, which has since been removed by YouTube. “As a government, you have been at the forefront of the aggression towards the Islamic State. You have plotted against us and have gone far out of your way to find reasons to interfere in our affairs. Today, your military air force is attacking us daily in Iraq, your strikes have caused casualties among Muslims.” Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Foley disappeared in northwest Syria on November 22, 2012. The White House said they have not yet confirmed the authenticity of the video. NYT In Washington, a National Security Council spokeswoman, Caitlin Hayden, said in a statement: “We have seen a video that purports to be the murder of U.S. citizen James Foley by ISIL. The intelligence community is working as quickly as possible to determine its authenticity. If genuine, we are appalled by the brutal murder of an innocent American journalist,” she said, using an alternative name for ISIS.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Todd Eyed for MTP | LA Times Names Publisher, CEO

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Meet The Press Reportedly Plans to Announce New Moderator Soon, Chuck Todd The Favorite (Politico / Playbook)
Chuck Todd, a political obsessive and rabid sports fan, is the likely successor to David Gregory as moderator of Meet The Press, with the change expected to be announced in coming weeks, according to top political sources. TVNewser Meet The Press has slipped to third among the Sunday public affairs shows. Todd is currently NBC’s chief White House correspondent and political director, as well as the anchor of the 9 a.m. Daily Rundown on MSNBC. FishbowlDC The New York Post’s Page Six first reported in late July that Gregory may soon be replaced. The Daily Beast’s Lloyd Grove later wrote in a follow-up piece that, “In multiple conversations that I had with people inside and outside NBC after the item appeared, it was taken as a given that Gregory is toast.” TVNewser Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace appeared on MediaBuzz to give his thoughts on the rumors and the influence of Sunday shows today. “I think it’s lousy,” Wallace said about how NBC News is treating Gregory amid rumors of his imminent ousting. FishbowlDC “I think they either ought to say he’s our guy, we’re sticking by him, or they ought to get rid of him, but they shouldn’t put him in this limbo,” said Wallace.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Bloomberg Cancels Hunt | CNN Politics Makes Cuts

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Bloomberg Media Makes Cuts in Three Cities, Cancels Political Capital (TVNewser)
Bloomberg Media made cuts in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles and New York City Thursday. FishbowlDC Bloomberg announced several layoffs in its D.C. bureau, relocating a few TV production positions to New York, where its daily politics show with Mark Halperin and John Heilemann — slated to launch in October — will be produced. Amid news of the layoffs, Bloomberg spokeswoman Amanda Cowie shared the following statement: ”Our TV operation — in the U.S. and around the world — is growing in size. We are changing how, and where, the TV operation is run.” NYT Some political and finance reporters were dismissed and the company will move some European television production jobs to London. It will also close its small television bureau in Los Angeles and focus its resources on San Francisco. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Bloomberg Media has decided to cancel its weekly political talk show, Political Capital With Al Hunt. Hunt will continue to write his weekly column for Bloomberg View, the site’s opinion vertical. Several print staff will also be laid off. Staffers will have the option to apply for other jobs at the company. TheWrap “We will continue to expand our Washington coverage. We’re launching a new politics platform — including for the first time a daily political show — expanding initiatives like First Word DC, investing in financial crimes reporting and the changes are a part of the overall new structure being put into place,” Cowie said.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: NewsHour Names Just EP | Discovery, Sony Make Gains

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PBS NewsHour Names ABC’s Sara Just Executive Producer (FishbowlDC)
PBS NewsHour announced Thursday that 25-plus year ABC News-er Sara Just has been tapped to serve as the program’s executive producer and SVP of NewsHour Productions LLC. Variety Just will oversee the daily operations of the nightly news program, co-anchored by Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff. Deadline Hollywood Just, who has been ABC News’ deputy Washington Bureau chief since April, will join NewsHour on Sept. 2, succeeding Linda Winslow, who is retiring. Just’s hire comes on the heels of WETA taking over NewsHour from MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, the company named after former anchors Robert MacNeil and Jim Lehrer, on July 1. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Before becoming deputy Washington bureau chief at ABC, Just was senior Washington producer for Good Morning America and had spent 17 years at Ted Koppel’s Nightline. ABC News president James Goldston said in a memo to staff Just was integral to the innovation of their digital political coverage. NYT NewsHour has struggled in recent years to raise enough funds to meet its annual budget of $25 million to $30 million, although WETA officials said at the time of the ownership transfer they were confident they could find the money. With money tight, the program has not been able to do as much field reporting as some critics would like. Just said that she would better understand the program’s budget challenges once she started, but added “I think reporting from the field is essential,” when paired with insightful analysis.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: NYT Profit Plummets | Twitter Beats Street, Stock Soars

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NYT Profits Plummet 21 Percent (FishbowlNY)
As usual, the New York Times’ earnings report features both good and bad news. While the Times’ digital subscriptions continued to grow, the lack of print ad dollars weighed the paper down. HuffPost / AP The New York Times Co. on Tuesday reported earnings that declined by 54 percent in its second quarter, and missed analysts’ expectations. The New York-based company said net income declined to $9.2 million, or 6 cents per share, from $20.1 million, or 13 cents per share, in the same quarter a year earlier. Financial Times Adjusted operating profit, which strips out some one-time items including retirement costs and depreciation, fell 21 percent to $55.7 million. A fall in advertising sales and stepped-up investment in digital products sapped second-quarter profit at the Times as the publisher forecast flat circulation revenue and further declines in advertising in the coming months. Poynter / MediaWire The Times added 32,000 digital subscribers in the second quarter of 2014. The number was driven by its new products — the NYT Now and NYT Opinion apps and the new Times Premier subscription tier. Paid digital-only subscribers now total 831,000, the company said. Revenue from those subscriptions jumped 13.5 percent, to $41.7 million, from the same period a year ago. Total circulation revenue increased 1.4 percent. Mashable During the quarter, the company’s flagship newspaper fired top editor Jill Abramson and replaced her with former managing editor Dean Baquet. A Times spokesperson said at the time that Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher of the Times and chairman of The New York Times Company, was spurred by a desire to change how the newsroom was managed.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Zakaria Joins The Atlantic | The Hill Names Cusack Editor-in-Chief

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Fareed Zakaria to Join Atlantic Media as Contributing Editor (FishbowlDC)
Atlantic Media announced Monday that Fareed Zakaria will join The Atlantic and Quartz as a contributing editor in September. In this role, he will write for The Atlantic and participate in AtlanticLIVE and Quartz events. FishbowlNY Zakaria will continue his current roles as host for CNN and a columnist for The Washington Post. HuffPost “I have read The Atlantic with pleasure for three decades,” Zakaria said. “It is the best forum for ideas in the world and I’m delighted to be a part of it and Quartz.” Poynter / MediaWire Zakaria will cover “pressing world matters and culture”, and his work will appear both in the magazine and on TheAtlantic.com, according to Atlantic Media. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Zakaria’s first event with the company will be Quartz’s The Next Billion: A Connected World conference in New York in November.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Time Warner Plays Defense | Netflix Hits 50 Million Subscribers

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Time Warner Cancels Shareholders’ Ability to Call Special Board Meeting, Guards Against Fox Acquisition (NYT / DealBook)
Time Warner is playing defense. On Monday, the company amended its corporate bylaws and removed a provision that allowed shareholders to call a special board meeting. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Time Warner said the change was effective immediately. Variety The media company’s board approved a measure to temporarily prevent a fraction of shareholders, some 15 percent, from forcing a vote on 21st Century Fox’s $85 per-share offer, according to public filings. The so-called special meeting provision may be re-instated at the company’s 2015 shareholders meeting. Deadline Hollywood The fear was that Rupert Murdoch — or anyone — could have tried to stampede short-term investors into accepting a deal even if the board concluded that it would not serve their long-term interests. Time Warner shares were down 1.6 percent in post-market trading following disclosure of the change. THR Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox has bid about $80 billion to acquire Time Warner, but Time Warner’s board and CEO Jeffrey Bewkes have rejected the proposal. Some analysts predict that 21st Century Fox will eventually offer $100 a share for Time Warner. The conglomerate’s stock has climbed 23 percent in the past week on such speculation, and Monday it closed at $87.36. TVNewser People familiar with the original $80 billion proposal that was rejected said if 21st Century Fox took over Time Warner, it would sell CNN to prevent antitrust issues stemming from Fox News and CNN’s direct competitor relationship.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: O’Donnell’s Return Official | Emmy Noms Favor CNN, Social TV

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rosie o'donnell the view

Rosie O’Donnell Officially Returning to The View (TVNewser)
Rosie O’Donnell is returning to The View as a co-host in the fall, ABC confirmed via Twitter Thursday. Variety O’Donnell will join moderator Whoopi Goldberg. ABC execs are in the midst of a extensive search for new producers to take the reins of The View as the show prepares to replace panelists Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy, who recently exited the daytime program. THR / The Live Feed O’Donnell, who was a panelist on The View for the 2007-2008 season, left after just one year. O’Donnell had a notably stormy tenure on the show, often fighting with conservative panelist Elisabeth Hasselbeck, who suggested on Fox News on Wednesday that O’Donnell had been plotting her return to the show for “a very, very long time.” HuffPost TMZ reported Tuesday that the former co-host would be returning, claiming that O’Donnell had been in “active talks” with the show. This will be ABC’s first move to put back the pieces after the major overhaul that left Whoopi Goldberg as the show’s only remaining co-host. In June, Shepherd and McCarthy announced that they would be leaving, and ABC implied in a statement that their departures were not voluntary. Barbara Walters, the show’s creator, retired in May and Joy Behar and Hasselbeck both exited the show in 2013. NYT O’Donnell’s name immediately arose as most likely to be the first-named replacement. Her outspoken and often politically oriented commentary helped spark a surge in the show’s ratings. A committed liberal with strong views on numerous topics, she also got into some widely publicized feuds, with Donald Trump and others.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Coulson Gets 18 Months | SiriusXM Fires Opie & Anthony‘s Cumia

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Andy Coulson Gets 18 Months in Tabloid Phone Hacking (NYT)
Andy Coulson, a former senior editor in Rupert Murdoch’s news empire and a onetime adviser to Prime Minister David Cameron, was sentenced on Friday to 18 months in prison for his part in the phone hacking scandal that convulsed Britain’s press, police and political elite and inspired calls for tighter regulation of journalists. HuffPost / AP Coulson was convicted June 24 after an eight-month trial triggered by a tabloid-wrongdoing scandal that led Murdoch to shut down the News of The World in 2011. Another former editor, Rebekah Brooks, and four others were acquitted. The Guardian The offense carries a maximum sentence of two years’ imprisonment, but Coulson received a discount of several months for his previous good character. He could be out in less than nine months because, as a non-violent offender, he is required to serve just half his sentence. THR Three other former News of the World staffers and one private investigator who hacked phones for the paper also pleaded guilty to hacking and also received their sentences Friday. They are former news desk editors Greg Miskiw, James Weatherup and Neville Thurlbeck, as well as Glenn Mulcaire, a private investigator who was used for hacking. Miskiw and Thurlbeck were sentenced to six months each, Weatherup got a suspended sentence of four months, and Mulcaire was given a suspended sentence of six months. Variety Coulson faces a retrial along with former royals editor Clive Goodman on separate charges that they made illegal payments to police officers to obtain royal phone directories. Over a period of more than a decade, journalists at the now-shuttered Sunday paper listened in on thousands of voicemails belonging to celebrities, politicians and crime victims.

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Morning Media Newsfeed: Google Buys Songza | MSNBC Holds Second Place

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Google in Deal for Songza, A Music Playlist Service (NYT)
In a sign of growing consolidation in the digital music business, Google announced on Tuesday that it had bought Songza, a three-year-old app that competes with Pandora and others in making customized playlists of recommended songs. Re/code The New York Post reported in June that the deal could be worth $15 million. Unlike some acquired startups, Songza won’t be shutting down. Its team will be joining Google in New York and helping with contextual recommendation features for Google Play and possibly YouTube down the line. GigaOM Songza offers custom curated playlists based on categories like genre, mood, decade and activity (“Drinking at A Dive Bar,” “’60s International,” etc.) and offers song suggestions based on the time of day and week. The service is free and songs aren’t interrupted by ads. THR The acquisition comes on the heels of Apple’s deal to purchase Beats Electronics and its streaming music service for $3 billion. Amazon also has jumped into the music streaming market with the launch of the Prime Music service, which comes as part of its $99 annual Prime subscription. The move appears to be part of Google’s plans to compete in this increasingly crowded music-streaming space, which is already dominated by Spotify. Variety Google said it plans to use Songza to make its Play Music service more attractive. The Songza purchase also comes as marketers are spending more on online and mobile radio services in the U.S. Ad sales generated $1.65 billion in the U.S. last year, a gain of 26.3 percent, according to digital research group eMarketer. That’s expected to increase another 23 percent to $2 billion this year.

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