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Tuesday, Apr 02

Morning Media Newsfeed 04.02.13

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Aereo Wins a Court Battle, Dismaying Broadcasters (NYT)
A federal appeals court in New York on Monday upheld a ruling in favor of Aereo, the start-up Internet service that streams stations without compensating them. The decision set the stage for a full-blown trial. Aereo challenges one of the most basic tenets of the television business. Broadcasters have been trying to sue it out of existence for a year. AllThingsD In essence, the court said that Aereo's technical architecture -- which pulls down broadcast TV signals from the air, stores them on a computer and retransmits them to its users over the Web, without paying broadcasters for the rights to do so -- may well hold up to further legal scrutiny. If Aereo, backed by Barry Diller's IAC, does end up winning in court, it doesn't ensure that the company will succeed. But it would most definitely affect the bottom line of the broadcast TV networks, which pull in huge fees from pay TV providers for the right to show their programming. TVSpy Aereo allows subscribers to watch and record programs without paying licensing fees on supported set top boxes, computers or mobile devices while they're airing. Subscriptions range from a day pass for $1 to an annual plan costing $80. The annual plan includes the ability to record two shows at once or watch one show while recording another. THR / Hollywood, Esq. Aereo CEO Chet Kanojia expressed satisfaction. He said, "We may be a small start-up, but we've always believed in standing up and fighting for our consumers. We are grateful for the court's thoughtful analysis and decision and we look forward to continuing to build a successful business that puts consumers first." Said Diller in a statement: "We always thought our Aereo platform was permissible and I'm glad the court has denied the injunction -- now, we'll build out the rest of the US."

Reselling Digital Goods Is Copyright Infringement, Judge Rules (Wired / Threat Level)
A federal judge is declaring as unlawful a one-of-a-kind website enabling the online sale of pre-owned digital music files. ReDigi, which opened in late 2011, provides a platform to buy and sell used MP3s that were once purchased lawfully through iTunes. The case weighed the so-called first-sale doctrine, the legal theory that people in lawful possession of copyright material have the right to resell it. U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan, ruling in a suit brought by Vivendi's Capitol Records, said the doctrine did not apply to digital goods. GalleyCat This could have dramatic implications for the future of a digital used book marketplace, as the judge wrote that "the Court cannot of its own accord condone the wholesale application of the first sale defense to the digital sphere." The first sale doctrine would pave the way for the reselling of digital books. Reuters eBooks, MP3 songs and digital videos bought from iTunes or are effectively rentals, which means they cannot be re-sold once used. Earlier this year, Amazon was awarded a patent for an online mechanism to allow customers to sell or transfer digital goods. Apple has applied for a patent covering a similar system. Joe Wikert, general manager and publisher at O'Reilly Media, Inc., described the Capitol Records ruling as "not a good first step" in the development of marketplaces for used digital goods. The Verge ReDigi has issued a statement on the matter, pointing out that the ruling applies to the 1.0 version of its service, and that the 2.0 iteration -- which is currently in operation -- is not impacted.

CNN Launches New (Get To) The Point for One Week (Deadline Hollywood)
Another week and another announcement from Jeff Zucker's ratings-challenged CNN. As of Monday night, Anderson Cooper 360 is being moved out of its 10 p.m. repeat slot for (Get To) The Point. CNN says that the Donny Deutsch-led Point will run for only a week, but a source tells me the fate of the panel show could change quickly depending on viewer response. ESPN columnist Rick Reilly, author Margaret Hoover and ESPN NFL analyst Jason Taylor will also appear. TVNewser It's being described as "a week of special programming," and not as a permanent 10 p.m. program, but let us not forget that another cable news panel show, The Five, began life as a replacement program as well, and is now one of Fox News Channel's highest-rated shows.

TBS Renews Conan Through 2015 (THR / The Live Feed)
TBS is keeping the lights on at Conan. Conan O'Brien's late-night talk show has been renewed through November 2015, TBS announced Monday. The series launched in November 2010 and marked the cable network's entry into the late-night space. NYT TBS is promoting O'Brien's success with young viewers. The network notes that his audience has the youngest median age in late-night television, 39.7 for this television season. By contrast, Leno's is 58.1 and Fallon's is 53.3. Variety The network's parent, Time Warner's Turner unit, was not under any deadline to negotiate new terms with the comedian, according to a person familiar with the situation, but wanted to express its satisfaction with the audience the program brings to the network.

Matt Lauer Is Still Today's Man (TV Guide)
Despite what you may have read, not everybody hates Matt Lauer. So says Today executive producer Don Nash, who recently sat in on a focus group of female morning-show viewers. When they were asked what would make them stop watching the NBC program, "every one of them said, 'If Matt Lauer were to leave,'" Nash says. "Their opinions didn't square with what we had been reading in the papers and on websites." TVNewser Nash weighs in on focus group results about Lauer and the show, and recent news that NBC had reached out to Anderson Cooper about possibly joining the program at some point.

National Magazine Award Finalists Announced (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
The American Society of Magazine Editors has announced the finalists for the 2013 National Magazine Awards, or Ellies, which are considered the most prestigious awards in the industry. FishbowlNY National Geographic leads the pack with seven nominations. Following up NatGeo is Bon Appétit and New York with six nominations; and GQ and The New Yorker each got five. WWD Four Times Square was especially jubilant. Condé Nast picked up 26 nominations to Hearst Corp.'s and Time Inc.'s nine each. The awards have very little impact on ad sales or circulation, but they offer an even more prized commodity to publishers: bragging rights.

Fox News Reporter Ordered to Return to Court Over Refusal to Reveal Sources (
The reporter who broke the exclusive story about a notebook that Colorado shooter James Holmes sent to his psychiatrist, then refused to reveal her sources under threat of jail, was ordered to return to the Aurora courtroom April 10, in a case experts say has chilling ramifications for the First Amendment.

Business Outsider: Can a Disgraced Wall Street Analyst Earn Trust as a Journalist? (The New Yorker)
The newsroom of Business Insider occupies the 13-floor of 257 Park Ave. South, overlooking the sidewalks and snail-mail concerns of 21st Street.

Ain't It Cool's Harry Knowles: The Cash-Strapped King of the Nerds Plots a Comeback (THR)
It was July 2012, and Harry Knowles was working up a sweat. His phone rang. Still trudging, Knowles answered. It was Roland De Noie, his business manager. "I really f---ed up," said De Noie in a panic. "It's all my fault."

Gender Questions Arise in Obituary of Rocket Scientist and Her Beef Stroganoff (NYT / Public Editor's Journal)
Yvonne Brill's accomplishments as a scientist made her a natural subject for a Times obituary last weekend. When this particular obituary appeared online Saturday, though, it caused many readers to do a double-take because of its emphasis on Brill's domestic life. I talked to William McDonald, the obituaries editor, on Monday morning about the reaction.

Neal Conan: Decision to End Talk of the Nation 'Was Not Mine' (Poynter / MediaWire)
Neal Conan, the host of Talk of the Nation, didn't use the "R word" when talking about the end of his 11-year stint on the call-in radio show. "While I will definitely be changing my life after I leave NPR, I would not describe the next phase as 'retirement,'" he wrote in an email to Poynter. He did note, however, "the decision to cease production on TOTN was not mine."

After the Newspaper Building (The New Republic)
It is impossible to imagine anyone being drawn to a downtown newspaper building today to receive the words of reporters on a still-warm paper product, for the obvious reason that information is beamed to each of us so much more conveniently on our personal devices. But as news has ceased to be a physical commodity, so too has the big-city newspaper building lost its meaning.

Cat Marnell Gets $500K Book Deal (NY Post / Page Six)
Drug-addicted beauty writer Cat Marnell has landed a book deal with Simon & Schuster for her memoir, How to Murder Your Life. Marnell, who has been in and out of rehab for her addiction to prescription drugs, famously told us she'd rather "smoke angel dust with her friends" than hold down a full-time job after being fired from Jane Pratt's website, FishbowlNY Hopefully the book deal means Marnell is doing well. Maybe the memoir will even be about how glamorizing addiction is a terrible thing to do. Let us know if it is, because we're going to pass.

E-bleeder: is Nook on Its Deathbed? (The Verge)
The ending has yet to be written for Barnes & Noble's Nook story, which began with the surprise debut of the original Nook e-reader back in late 2009. But recent plot twists don't appear to bode well for the subsidiary known as "Nook Media," which contains the company's e-reader, tablet and digital content businesses, and which two other companies -- Microsoft and publisher Pearson -- have bought into.

The Vice Guide to the World (The New Yorker)
Late in February, in the Ryugyong Chung Ju-yung Indoor Stadium, in Pyongyang, North Korea, 10,000 stiff-looking spectators in gray Mao suits gathered to watch a basketball game. Vice Media, the Brooklyn-based company, had arranged to have members of the Harlem Globetrotters -- Anthony (Buckets) Blakes, Will (Bull) Bullard, and Alex (Moose) Weekes -- play with North Korea's national team.

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