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Wednesday, Apr 10

Morning Media Newsfeed 04.10.13

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Alec Baldwin Said to Be in Talks to Join NBC's Late-Night Lineup (NYT / Media Decoder)
A well-known name is the latest to surface in the populated field of late-night television hosts: Alec Baldwin. The Emmy-winning actor is in the mix for a spot in NBC's late-night lineup, one executive involved in the network's program planning said. The executive asked not to be identified because the talks were still in initial stages. The most likely landing place for a show hosted by Baldwin would be in the latest of NBC's entries, the show now called Last Call. That half-hour interview program currently stars Carson Daly. Entertainment Weekly / Inside TV The 55-year-old actor, who won two Emmys during his seven seasons on 30 Rock, has some shiny emcee credits on his resume: He has hosted Saturday Night Live no less than 16 times, he has co-hosted the Oscars, and he hosts a weekly interview podcast called Here's the Thing on WNYC, in which he journeys into the homes and dressing rooms of celebrities like Chris Rock, Michael Douglas, David Letterman, and Lena Dunham. Forbes / Dorothy Pomerantz We estimate that Baldwin earned $15 million between May 2011 and May 2012. His earnings are sure to fall this year with the end of 30 Rock but a new nightly show could help get him back in the money game. Deadline Hollywood It would be interesting whether Lorne Michaels, who was behind turning Baldwin into SNL's top host and bringing him to primetime with 30 Rock, would also be involved in the actor's potential foray into the late-night talk show circus. Michaels already runs SNL and will executive produce The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon. He may also keep his grip on Late Night, especially if his protégé Seth Meyers gets the gig. Can he take it all?

How Did Mother Jones Obtain McConnell Tape? (The Washington Post / Erik Wemple)
Mitch McConnell's political operation today grew in the estimation of the Erik Wemple Blog, thanks to Mother Jones magazine. The lefty outlet scored a secret audio recording of a Feb. 2 strategy session by the team seeking to reelect McConnell, the Kentucky Republican who leads his party in the Senate. As the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza has written, there's nothing striking here. The issue is not the McConnell campaign, its ethics or its viability; it's all about how this tape came about. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media McConnell's reelection campaign is working with the FBI to investigate how the liberal magazine Mother Jones obtained a recording of the Senate minority leader and his aides discussing opposition research on Ashley Judd. TPM / TPMDC "[I]f the 'bugging' was done by a person in the room, that may be OK," wrote Hanni Fakhoury, a staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, in an email to TPM. "If the recording was done by someone not in the room, then there is likely wiretap liability." Republicans say the meeting was a private meeting in a private office, but for legal purposes that might not matter. Mother Jones "As the story makes clear, we were recently provided with the tape by a source who wishes to remain anonymous. We published the article on the tape due to its obvious newsworthiness. We were not involved in the making of the tape, but it is our understanding that the tape was not the product of any kind of bugging operation. We cannot comment beyond that, except to say that under the circumstances, our publication of the article is both legal and protected by the First Amendment."

Tumblr Axes Editorial Team Behind Storyboard on the Way to Profitability (The Next Web)
On Tuesday, Tumblr announced that it was laying off its entire editorial team responsible for its Storyboard service. A year after the company created the team of journalists and editors to help cover it as a "living, breathing community", founder David Karp said that Tumblr's experiment had come to an end. paidContent Although Tumblr has posted some fairly large traffic numbers, with more than 140 million unique visitors and 20 billion pageviews, the company has struggled to generate revenue -- only recently launching an advertising program for its mobile app, after a long period of rejecting such money-making measures -- and has promised that the network would be profitable this year.

The CBC's George Stroumboulopoulos to Host Weekly Show on CNN (TVNewser)
Longtime CBC host George Stroumboulopoulos will be joining CNN to host a new weekly interview/talk program for the channel. CNN has ordered 10 episodes of the hour-long series, which will debut this summer on Friday nights. Deadline Hollywood The new and as-yet unnamed Stroumboulopoulos-hosted show will film in LA in front of a live audience. Similar to the Canadian's long-running talk show George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight in Canada, the CNN series will feature in-depth interviews along with musical performances.

Turns Out Google Didn't Sell Social Followers Back to Arthur Frommer (Skift)
A small mystery emerged Tuesday evening and got solved quickly as well: turns out when Google sold back the Frommer's brand name to founder Arthur Frommer, the social accounts and its followers weren't part of that deal. This was discovered Tuesday evening when some Twitter users found out that the @FrommersTravel handle, with all its 295K followers, was deleted and then later the followers were transferred over to @ZagatTravel. paidContent In retrospect, it appears that the social media data may have been Google's goal all along when it obtained Frommer's from publisher John Wiley & Sons for $22 million in August 2012. The company has not disclosed how it much received for selling the brand back to Arthur Frommer, who intends to relaunch the title's print editions, which Google decided to discontinue in favor of digital-only offerings.

Broadcasters Circle Wagons Against A TV Streaming Upstart (NYT)
When Chase Carey, Rupert Murdoch's top deputy at News Corporation, told broadcasters on Monday about his contingency plan to turn the Fox network into something available only on cable, he knew policy makers would be listening, too. But a few of them were busy that day, meeting with Chet Kanojia, the very man who had provoked Carey's stark warning. CNET Another television network has joined the broadcaster backlash following last week's court decision upholding Internet TV company Aereo's right to stream broadcast TV without paying retransmission fees.

Facebook Home: Slick, Fun and, for Now, Superficial (Time / Technologizer)
If you attended Facebook's "our new Home on Android" event last Thursday -- or watched the live stream -- you could be forgiven if you came away confused about just how significant Facebook thought its news was. On one hand, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg kept stressing that, despite long-standing rumors, the company wasn't announcing a "Facebook phone" after all. But Zuckerberg also said Facebook Home was a paradigm shift: a piece of software that makes the phones running it people-centric rather than app-centric. So which is it? Is Facebook Home a simple and straightforward piece of software, or a landmark? ABC News / Tech This Out Yes, Facebook has made the raw design of Cover Feed very clean and beautiful, but that design can quickly turn ugly. Sure, over the past week I've had numerous photos of cute dogs, delicious baked goods and perfectly refined selfies grace the front of the HTC First. But I've also had lewd photos of a body builder, children I really don't know and bottles of beer stream across it. The Verge As a home screen, Facebook Home is definitely a mixed bag. However, the second part of Home is a big update to Facebook Messenger that changed the way I talk to people on my smartphone. It's called "Chat Heads," which is a stupid name for a great idea.

Fox Unveils Streaming Plan to Affiliates (TVNewsCheck)
The Fox TV Network unveiled a TV everywhere plan to its affiliates Tuesday that will allow them to stream network content, in addition to their local content, through a dedicated Fox app and on the Web. TVSpy Similar to Disney's Watch ESPN app and ABC's current streaming strategy, paid TV subscribers would be able to access local and network content through a variety of apps and on the Web. Once authenticated, users could watch a live, linear stream or individual video-on-demand programming.

New York Times Names Pamela Paul Book Review Editor (FishbowlNY)
Pamela Paul has been named the New York Times' book review editor. She will take over the role previously occupied by Sam Tanenhaus, who has been named writer-at-large. Tanenhaus was the book review editor for the past nine years.

Meet the 17-Year-Old Who's Already Got A Three-Book Deal With Random House (The Atlantic Wire)
Beth Reekles is the 17-year-old Welsh high school student who posted her first novel, The Kissing Booth, online at the story-sharing site Wattpad, where it got more than 19 million views -- not to mention the eyes of editors at Random House Children's Publishers UK.

David Axelrod Will Add to the Stack of Team Obama Memoirs (The Atlantic Wire)
It looks like 2014 will be a busy year for book readers hoping to learn more about the inner workings of the Obama administration. David Axelrod, the chief strategizer behind the president's two electoral victories, just signed a deal with Penguin to write a memoir about his partnership with Barack Obama, adding to a growing list of Obama confidants ready to spill their guts on paper.

This Simple App Could Put eBooks on Millions of Phones in the Third World (Forbes / Parmy Olson)
On Wednesday, Worldreader Mobile comes out of "beta" mode. About a year ago it partnered with biNu, a mobile app platform for feature phones in developing countries, so that its Worldreader Mobile app would appear on the home screen. David Risher, a former executive at Amazon and co-founder of non-profit organization Worldreader Mobile, says that in the last year, 10 percent of biNu's 5 million-user base have accessed the Worldreader Mobile app. That's about 500,000 people. He hopes to get that number to 1 million by the end of 2014.

Barnes & Noble Launches NOOK Press (GalleyCat)
Barnes & Noble has relaunched its self-publishing arm as NOOK Press. The new tools were designed through a partnership with FastPencil. AppNewser Independent authors who used the bookseller's PubIt! platform need to switch to the new platform.

How Wired Magazine Changed the Way We Talk About Technology (Adweek)
Imagine a time before smartphones. Before laptops. Before Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and even the mighty Google. A world without Web browsers, when the Internet belonged to universities and going online meant logging onto a local electronic bulletin board. Now imagine being able to smell it all coming -- not the details, but the impact of a networked world on culture, business, politics, daily life. These were the preconditions that spawned Wired.

Newspaper Revenue: Good News, Bad News (CJR / The Audit)
The ad picture has nothing encouraging to offer. First, digital ads remain basically stuck in neutral, rising 4 percent over the previous year from a low base of $3.4 billion. Digital ads make up 11 percent of overall revenue on average (though the figure varies widely from paper to paper), and appear to be stuck at the level for the foreseeable future. This is particularly true given that digital ad rates generally themselves are falling materially.

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