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Posts Tagged ‘Stephen Colvin’

The Truth About Rachel Uchitel’s Tweet and a Birthday Party for Ed Rollins

1003_mockup.gifWhen it comes to Wednesdays at Michael’s, the early bird might not always get the best table, but today it did land me something of a timely scoop. Some time before noon, I spotted Rachel Uchitel, the woman whose texts to Tiger Woods helped bring down the golf legend and launched a thousand tabloid headlines in 2009. I half expected her to bolt when I identified myself as a reporter, but she was gracious and downright chatty when I asked about the countless reports that her recent “Everyone deserves a second chance” tweet was a thinly veiled reference to Tiger and Lindsey Vonn‘s joint announcement on Facebook that they were dating.

“Everyone in the media immediately thought it was about Tiger,” she told me exclusively. “I still have not talked about him and never will. I haven’t told anyone about this, but the tweet was about my 94-year-old grandfather, Sam Lionel, who is getting married. His fiancee is 52 and there has been some family drama about it, so that’s what I was referring to. I’m even throwing her a bachelorette party.” Rachel, who just moved back to New York from San Francisco, told me that The New York Post approached her about writing an article about the recent turn of events but she turned them down flat. “First of all, check your facts, thank you very much,” she said referring to their reporting about her tweet. “And also I’d never write anything about that.”

Rachel told me these days she is “totally obsessed” with her 10-month-old daughter Wyatt Lilly who took her first steps yesterday. (Dad is husband Matt Hahn.) “I love that she wants a big kiss just from me sometimes. It’s the first time that I really have come to understand just what unconditional love is. You think you can get it from a man, but this is so different. She is my whole existence.” Being a mother, says Rachel, has given her a sense of peace and satisfaction that had previously eluded her, but she still is sorting out where she wants to go from here. ”I don’t want to be away from her and miss anything.” Still, though, she’d like to find “meaningful work.” Says Rachel, “For the past three years I have struggled with my identity. I used to be a journalist, but since 2009 it has been difficult to find a job because of the baggage attached to me.” She’s been offered several reality shows and did a stint on Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew, but has turned them all down. “It’s hard, but now that I’ve moved back to New York, I’d like to find something interesting to do.” For the woman whose tear-stained face made the cover of The New York Post when she first lost her then fiancé on 9/11 (a tearsheet hangs in the Smithsonian) and then went on to become the poster girl for one of the biggest celebrity scandals of the decade, life in recent years has been a series of headlines. That’s a pretty attractive quality in an employee in certain circles is this town, isn’t it?

Emilio Romano and Diane Clehane

I had a fascinating and enjoyable lunch with Emilio Romano, (pictured, right) president of Telemundo Media and the network’s vice president of corporate communications and public affairs, Michelle Alban. The charming and dynamic Emilio joined the company in 2011 and in his current position runs Telemundo’s broadcast network, its 15 owned stations, as well as the company’s entertainment division and Telemundo Studios, which is the No. 1 producer of original Spanish language primetime content for Hispanics in the United States. He also oversees the news and sports divisions, Telemundo’s digital media group and the company’s sales and marketing arms. I’ve talked to plenty of media titans in this dining room over the years, and I can say without question I found Emilio to be one of the most engaging, genuine and interesting executives I’ve ever met. While telling me about all the exciting things happening at Telemundo these days, he chatted easily with the wait staff about where they were from and asking them in Spanish what they watched on television and why.

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Travel Writing

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Newsweek/The Daily Beast Taps Baba Shetty as New CEO

Baba Shetty has been named the new CEO of Newsweek/The Daily Beast. Shetty comes to the company from the ad agency Hill Holliday. He had been at Hill Holliday since 2006, most recently serving as its chief strategy officer.

“Baba is a real catalyst in bringing ideas to the marketplace,” said Tina Brown, in a memo announcing the hire. “We collaborated on our very successful Mad Men issue together and forged a terrific creative relationship in the process. He is extremely gifted at brand and digital strategy, and is the perfect partner for the next phase of The Newsweek Daily Beast Company and our expanding live events business.”

Stephen Colvin, CEO of Newsweek/The Daily Beast since 2011, is leaving the company in October. He will be joining Lerer Ventures, a venture capital firm, as an executive-in-residence.

Unike Colvin — who reported to Barry Diller — Shetty will be reporting to Brown.

Read the full memo from Brown after the jump.

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New President at Newsweek/The Daily Beast, New York Adds to Roster

Some moves for you to start your day: Newsweek/The Daily Beast has named Rob Gregory as its President, a new position at the company. Gregory was most recently with Plum TV, and was a veteran with Wenner Media before that. Gregory said of joining the team, “Newsweek and The Daily Beast deliver the ideal combination of immediacy and perspective, with a voice that is razor sharp, smart and fearless.”

New York magazine is also adding to its roster, bringing aboard Jonathan Chait. Chait was most recently a Senior Editor at The New Republic. Chait told Politico, “Obviously I love TNR and had no plans to leave, but the opportunity at New York was irresistible. Everybody who works there raves about it, and my friends in journalism have noticed for a while it’s become phenomenal.”

The Newsweek/Daily Beast Merger Is Finally Official

It has been nearly three full months since Newsweek and The Daily Beast verified all the rumors and agreed to merge — today their deal has finally been signed, sealed, and delivered.  Although some speculated that the new media conglomerate would simply be coined “Newsbeast,” the company went with a more conservative title and will be known as The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC.  As expected, Tina Brown will serve as the title’s editor-in-chief, while IAC chairman Barry Diller and Newsweek owner Sidney Harman are both directors.  Harman has also been named executive chairman of the new entity.  Former Daily Beast president Stephen Colvin will act as The Newsweek/Daily Beast’s CEO.

Harman is glad to have all the paperwork completed and ready to get the show on the road.

This is an exciting undertaking.  We are convinced that the combination of Newsweek and The Daily Beast will extend the frontiers of read and heard news opinion.  Making the complex weekly news both comprehensive and comprehensible will be our mission.

Newsweek/Daily Beast Deal Finally Complete

It’s been in the works for months, but the deal to merge Newsweek magazine and Tina Brown‘s The Daily Beast website is finally complete. As expected, The Daily Beast will be running the show. Brown will take over editorial operations for both entities and Daily Beast president Stephen Colvin will now be CEO of the joint venture. Pre-merger Newsweek owner Sidney Harman will be Executive Chairman.

Brown has been staffing up in anticipation of the merger. Yesterday it was announced she added exiled Village Voice writer Wayne Barrett and New Yorker staffer Peter J. Boyer to her crew. Not a bad way to start the week.

Press release after the jump:

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So What Does The Future Hold For The Newsweek Daily Beast Co?

Update: Yup, turns out staffers’ (and our own) speculating proved, unfortunately, correct. Mediaweek is reporting that Newsweek.com will shut down as part of the merger, even thought its audience is bigger than that of The Daily Beast. So The Beast? It got claws, yo:

The Beast is the survivor, said Stephen Colvin, the company’s new CEO, “Because the Daily Beast is a very credible and successful news and opinion Web site. And with great vitality and distinct voice.”

More news is rolling in regarding the mighty mutant that is the newly-spawned Newsweek Daily Beast Company.

The New York Observer, with it’s new Newsweek-vet media reporter, was the first to break news of the final merger (although — gloat! — we broke the story on Tina Brown‘s name being in the race for Newsweek editor in chief) and now has reaction from staffers at both camps. Here’s what they know (or, in some cases, are speculating about) so far: Brown has yet to set a clear editorial vision for new combined publication. We do know for sure, however, that she sees print and online reporting as being inherently different from one another.

As Brown herself mentioned earlier, she’s bringing Daily Beast president Stephen Colvin along for the ride as the company’s new chief executive.

Newsweek.com and The Daily Beast will merge, “almost certainly under The Daily Beast’s banner.” The question, then, is what will happen to Newsweek‘s digital properties — and its staff.. Word is that the magazine’s international editions will continue on and there will most definitely be layoffs as all is streamlined and positions are made redundant. (Our eye, and five bucks, is on digital, for now.)

Atlantic Editor On Pay Walls: “Can’t Afford To Be Ideological”

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Last night The Atlantic hosted a discussion titled “Money, Media, and the Future of HBO” with network co-president Richard Plepler and the magazine’s Jeffrey Goldberg. Also on hand were Michael Hirschorn, Stephen Colvin of The Daily Beast, and Senator Michael Bennet.

Plepler discussed the success of HBOGo, which allows subscribers to view their favorite episodes of Entourage or True Blood from any computer, and eventually on portable devices like the iPad or Blackberry. The theme of the evening seemed to be, “Piracy will always be an issue, but people will always pay for quality.”

Looking to expand this theory to print publications, FishbowlNY talked to Atlantic editor James Bennet. The magazine was one of the earliest users of a pay wall on its Web site, but like The New York Times, it eventually took it down in 2008 to allow readers to view the content for free. Now that the Times is planning on charging again, would Bennet’s magazine follow suit?

“It’s an idea we’re constantly revisiting,” Bennet told us. “But we can’t afford to be ideological about it. The New York Times‘ announcement does not affect our decision at all.” The magazine has no current plans to reinstate a pay system, he added.

When asked how The Atlantic plans to monetize in new media, Bennet pointed to The Atlantic Fiction For Kindle, created exclusively for the e-reader, which provides a series of never-before-published fiction for $3.99 a month. This is one of the few genuinely novel ideas we’ve heard about in terms of regulating content. Since it’s virtually impossible to copy and disseminate (unless you feel like all that retyping), and since it’s an original product (unlike news, which users can get from a variety of sources), it may be one of the few types of word-based media people will still shell out money for.

Previously: So What Do You Do James Bennet, Editor of The Atlantic?, The Atlantic Tears Down Their Paywall

CNET’s Colvin Joins Daily Beast As President

Stephen Colvin.jpgOne year since its launch, online news hub The Daily Beast has named a president, Stephen Colvin. Colvin, executive vice president of CNET/CBS Interactive, will report directly to the site’s founder and editor-in-chief, Tina Brown.

Colvin was formerly the president and CEO of Maxim publisher Dennis Publishing, and helped oversee the company’s $225 million sale to the Quadrangle Group before joining CNET. At The Daily Beast, Colvin is charged with “revenue generation, audience development, brand development and social media,” the company said. He’ll also oversee the Beast Books imprint and develop new revenue streams, like events.

Full release after the jump

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Memo From Felix Dennis: ‘Remain Focused’

maxim_sold_061407.jpgFriday’s “We got sold” memo from Felix to all Dennis employees:

Today we announce that Dennis Publishing Inc will be acquired by Quadrangle Capital Partners, a leading private equity firm and Kent Brownridge, who many of you will know from his days at Wenner Media. The transaction includes our magazines Maxim, Blender and Stuff with their websites, but not The Week, which will continue to be published by me and my partners. A copy of the press release that we are issuing immediately is attached.

Between now and the closing of the deal, which should take place no later than September, business will continue as usual. At the closing Mr. Brownridge will assume the role of Chief Executive Officer of the Company and Stephen Colvin will step down and leave the Company. I want to take this opportunity to thank Stephen for all the hard work and commitment over the past 10 years that has made our Company and its magazines what they are today.

I know that many of you will have questions about what today’s announcement will mean. We are in the early stages of this process so we do not have all the answers. However, I can assure you that we will make the best possible effort to keep you informed as we move forward.

I want to thank all of you for your patience, hard work and dedication to the Company through this difficult process. I appreciate the important contribution that each of you makes every day and ask for your continued commitment. As always, we rely on you to remain focused on your day-to-day jobs to ensure that we continue to publish the extraordinary magazines and websites that our readers expect.

Thank you very much.

Felix Dennis.

EARLIER:

  • Finally: Dennis Sells Maxim, Stuff, Blender
  • Susan Lyne’s Internet Experiment

    Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia CEO and president Susan Lyne told the crowd at the MPA Digital conference that people are now letting their magazine “brands” live online, when they were once wary of associating their crown jewels with a new and “raw” technology. “We’re doing our first totally blended experiment” with new mag Blueprint, she said.

    “The model of launching new magazines is broken,” she continued, with very costly bulk mailings that get maybe three percent of recipients responding. By contrast, two-thirds of people who’ve signed up for Blueprint — a bimonthly that’s been published twice so far with what we’re told is a higher ad rate than flagship Martha Stewart Living — have come in through its Web site.

    Lyne, on a panel with Dennis Publishing CEO Stephen Colvin and moderated by Larry Kramer, said the digital staff at MSO has grown from 25 to some 70 people since the start of the year, and Internet is a “big investment” that, like any of their investments, has to pay off relatively quickly.