Morning Media Newsfeed 07.26.12
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Will Barry Diller Take Newsweek Web-Only? Mmmmaybe! (AllThingsD)
During IAC's earnings call Wednesday, an analyst asked Barry Diller if he has considered an online-only version of Newsweek. Short answer: Maybe. Poynter / MediaWire Bloomberg reporter Edmund Lee, who listened to IAC/InterActiveCorp's earning call, tweeted, "Barry Diller says there will be a plan in place later this year to take Newsweek digital only." He tweeted later that he had confirmed this with a public relations representative. Forbes / Mixed Media IAC doesn't break out the Newsweek/Beast's finances, but published reports have consistently pegged its losses at around $30 million last year. New York / Daily Intel "The brand is good. What is the problem? The problem is, manufacturing and producing a weekly news-magazine, and that has to be solved," Diller said. That could mean an all-digital version, but not necessarily. Or at least not right away. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media IAC spokesperson Justine Sacco emails to clarify: "[Diller] was speaking about the weekly print industry in general and said that it's difficult. We're looking at all options for Newsweek and will have a plan in place by September or October. He mentioned that he thinks at some point there will be a transition to online from hard print, not entirely, but a general transition, but that was in reference to the whole industry." TVNewser To summarize: Diller said something that could maybe possibly probably indicate Newsweek will soon be a digital only publication. Or not. Folio: The recent decision by the Harman family to stop investing in Newsweek has shifted the majority stake onto IAC, as well as more of the burden of managing what is still a money-losing operation. Deadline Hollywood Diller says that IAC also won't "contribute to the losses of the business as they've been this year... Our investment next year will be considerably less." Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Newsweek and Daily Beast editor-in-chief Tina Brown sought to calm her staff Wednesday following remarks from Diller suggesting that the magazine could cease publication of its print edition as early as this year. minOnline Newsweek's 2012 ad pages are up 4.07 percent through July 23, but that is misleading because its advertising base had atrophied from 2009 to 2011.Rival Time, though down 20.47 percent through the same issue date, had carried nearly 213 more ad pages (604.45 versus 391.47). TheWrap IAC also announced its second quarter finances, which included a 40 percent growth of its revenue to $680.6 million.
An Upbeat Q2 for AOL (AllThingsD)
Here's why Tim Armstrong felt confident enough to hang out at Michael's last week: AOL just posted a not-shabby Q2. Poynter / MediaWire In its second-quarter earnings report, AOL says Patch "grew traffic and engagement at double digit rates year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter" and that revenue more than doubled in the second quarter compared to a year earlier. Forbes / Mixed Media What looked like a solid beat -- a revenue decline of 2 percent, the company's best mark in seven years, and earnings per share of 23 cents, which balloons to $10.17 if you count the proceeds of a $1.2 billion sale of patents to Microsoft -- was actually better than that, explained Armstrong. FishbowlNY Net income for AOL hit $970 million and revenue was at $531 million, about $12 million higher than Wall Street predicted. Another factor in the positive quarter was global display ad revenue rose 2 percent, to $139 million. Total advertising also jumped almost 6 percent, to $337 million. paidContent Double-digit search revenue growth on AOL.com helped keep search decline to 1 percent, the best in more than three years. NYT / Media Decoder Global advertising revenue increased 6 percent from the comparable period last year, to $337.8 million, up from $319 million in 2011. Ad Age / Digital But perhaps the most interesting news was Armstrong's comments about upcoming changes to its hyperlocal news network Patch.
ABC-Affiliated KMGH Disputes ABC News Report on Colorado Shooting (TVSpy)
Denver ABC-affiliate KMGH is publicly disputing an ABC News report about Colorado theater shooting suspect James Holmes. TVNewser ABC News and the New York Daily News both reported Tuesday that Holmes has been spitting at officers in the Arpahoe County Jail, with ABC also reporting that Holmes was forced to wear a face mask. Without naming ABC News specifically, KMGH disputed these reports in an article posted on its website Wednesday afternoon. HuffPost This is the third reporting hiccup for ABC News since the Aurora shooting. During the network's breaking news coverage of the shooting on Friday, investigative correspondent Brian Ross incorrectly suggested that the shooting suspect was linked to the Tea Party. The network apologized for Ross' blunder. On Monday, Holmes' mother said that an ABC News report from Friday mischaracterized her conversation with a producer. Poynter / MediaWire A fund set up by the family of murdered sports journalist Jessica Ghawi hit its fundraising goal less than a day after it was announced Tuesday. The family hoped to raise $20,000; as I write this, the fund is at $30,155. FishbowlLA Classy move Wednesday by the Los Angeles Kings and Anschutz Entertainment Group as they donated $10,000 to the Jessica Redfield Foundation college scholarship fund. CNN It's not new for Facebook pages to pop up in support of accused killers and other distasteful figures, but a few dozen Holmes fan pages -- including one with more than 800 followers that appeared the day Holmes is accused of opening fire on a theater in Aurora, Colorado, killing 12 people and wounding dozens -- are raising new questions about what constitutes free and appropriate speech in the digital age, especially on Facebook. AllFacebook While Facebook pages paying tribute to James Holmes -- the alleged shooter in the attacks in a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., last week during the premiere showing of The Dark Knight Rises -- may violate all standards of common decency, they apparently do not violate Facebook's terms of service. HuffPost James Taranto, an editor at The Wall Street Journal, has found himself the target of criticism after sending a tweet about the three men who died shielding their girlfriends from gunfire during the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colo., last week. "I hope the girls whose boyfriends died to save them were worthy of the sacrifice," Taranto tweeted on Tuesday evening. JimRomenesko.com Taranto concedes that this was "an ill-considered tweet." HuffPost / AP Some relatives of people killed in the Colorado theater shooting are urging television news outlets to resist using alleged killer James Holmes' name and image in their stories for fear it gives him the infamy they believe he craves. CJR / The Kicker In recent weeks, while watching baseball games, The Daily Show, and (I admit) some Seinfeld reruns, I saw what seemed a never-ending reel of trailers for The Dark Knight Rises, The Amazing Spider-Man, and Savages. And I became disgusted by the wall-to-wall violence in them -- by the countless scenes of shootings and slashings, explosions and car crashes. Such interminable images of violence broadcast at all hours to a general audience could, I thought, only have a warping effect on society.
NBC Says it has Reached $1 Billion in Olympics Advertising (NYT / Media Decoder)
NBC said it had reached a previously untouched number in terms of advertising sales for a single television event: as of Wednesday, the network had taken in $1 billion in advertising for the coming Olympics in London. B&C The total is $150 million more than NBCU racked up for its coverage of the 2008 Olympics. But, as NBCU officials recently confirmed, despite the added advertising green sales they don't expect gold in the form of a profit from the London Games. Politico / AP There's a lot more room for advertising, since NBC Universal is showing more than 5,000 hours of competition on NBC, its cable affiliates and online. LA Times / Company Town NBCUniversal nearly a decade ago agreed to pay $1.18 billion for the TV rights to the London Games. The company is spending at least $100 million for staffing and equipment to televise the events. The media giant has nearly 3,400 people working on its Olympics coverage. Ad Age / Media News The $1 billion figure includes ad sales involving every NBC Universal outlet airing the London Olympics: NBC, NBC Sports Network, MSNBC, CNBC, Bravo, Telemundo, NBCOlympics.com, the NBC Olympics Live Extra mobile and tablet app, two specialty channels, and the first-ever 3-D channel. NBC Universal is live-streaming every athletic competition -- more than 3,500 hours, including all 32 sports and all 302 medals -- on NBCOlympics.com and, for the first time, on the NBC Olympics Live Extra app for both mobile devices and tablets. Adweek Over the course of the last 30 days, NBCU has brought in an additional $50 million in ad sales revenue, a surge driven by its expanded package of digital inventory and some late political spend. Insiders say the Obama campaign has snapped up $6 million in Olympics air time, a national buy that includes at least one 30-second prime time spot per night. The first Obama ad will air Friday night during NBC's coverage of the Opening Ceremonies.
Random House Launches TV Division (Publishers Weekly)
After several years working in the film business, with its Random House Films unit, Random House is getting into television. B&C FremantleMedia and Random House have agreed to a new partnership that will have FremantleMedia develop scripted programming based on the trade-book publisher's stable of fiction and nonfiction books. paidContent Random House authors will also be invited to develop original TV programming. Deadline Hollywood Jeffrey Levine has been named head of television for Random House Television. THR Levine joins the unit from Spring Creek Productions, where he developed features including Blood Diamond, Monster-in-Law and This Is Where I Leave You. His credits also include executive producing HBO's Too Big To Fail, which was nominated for 11 Emmys. GalleyCat Tony Optican will also work with Levine.
The Writer Magazine to 'Go on Hiatus' (FishbowlLA)
After 125 years of publication, The Writer magazine announced Wednesday that it "will go on hiatus" after its October 2012 issue. JimRomenesko.com "Our hope is that The Writer will re-emerge under the careful stewardship of a new owner," says a letter to contributors. GalleyCat It was founded in 1887 by Boston Globe reporters Robert Luce and William H. Hills. FishbowlNY Its parent company, Kalmbach Publishing, is looking for a buyer and until then production of the glossy will be on hold.
RXP Officially Back at 101.9 (FishbowlNY)
The cycle is complete. WEMP is no more. The former FM News station, which returned to alternative music earlier this month with New Rock 101.9, has also officially resurrected the familiar WRXP call letters.
September Fashion Mag Numbers Show Promise (FishbowlNY)
The September issue for fashion magazines is extremely important. For this year's September issue, InStyle looks to be in the early lead (Vogue hasn't released their numbers yet) by posting 440 ad pages. According to its publisher, Connie Anne Phillips, this will be the largest InStyle in the magazine's 18-year history. Adweek The official report from Vogue publisher Susan Plagemann has the Condé Nast flagship trouncing its competition with its largest September issue to date. With a whopping 658 ad pages, the magazine is up 14 percent year-over-year, making this the third year in a row that the title saw double-digit gains in September. Vogue isn't releasing the total number of pages in its September issue just yet, but on Friday, it will launch a game on its Facebook page where readers can guess how big the magazine will be. WWD / Memo Pad While some titles -- Elle and InStyle -- crowed this week of breaking their own records for the all-important September issues, other publishers are contending with advertising figures for the month that are much softer than expected -- and certainly shy of their halcyon prerecession days. For publishers, it was another stark reminder to put a premium on digital sales -- and also e-commerce, licensing and tablets.
Brauchli: Washington Post Reporters Will Need Editor's Approval to Share Drafts with Sources (Poynter / MediaWire)
Washington Post executive editor Marcus Brauchli says the paper's policy on sharing drafts with sources will get more restrictive after the Texas Observer reported that a Post reporter sent drafts of a story to the University of Texas.
Twitter, Hollywood Working on In-Stream Video Series (Adweek)
Forget the debate over whether Twitter wants to get in the media business. Twitter wants to be a media player. NY Observer / BetaBeat Sources say that Twitter is looking to host an exclusive reality Web series developed by one of the producers of fan favorite drama The Hills, delivered either as content tweeted and promoted in-stream, or on a standalone Twitter page like the company's recent NASCAR promotion. SocialTimes It sounds like we aren't just talking about a typical Web series here. What Twitter has in mind is something that hasn't been seen before -- a revolution in the way online video is discovered and consumed. CNET The possible content of the show was not discussed. But there was a lot of talk about advertising and branding.
Unfair Use? How a Documentary Filmmaker Was (Temporarily) Foiled by the Copyright Cops (CJR)
It began with an invitation to present at a TEDX event in Grand Rapids, Mich. I wanted to share with the TED audience the complex relationship between "creationism" and "curationism" -- or, more simply, the way creators are also organizers of ideas and content. On stage in Grand Rapids, I told the story of being both a filmmaker and curator. And I showed a short clip from a film, about 30 seconds or so out of a 15-minute presentation. I talked about the perils and complexity of a world of bandwidth and content abundance. And that was that -- until a year later, when the organizers of TEDX contacted me, somewhat concerned.
With Its New Pop-Out Markets Widget, The Wall Street Journal is After Super-Niche Readers (Nieman Journalism Lab)
The Wall Street Journal quietly launched a new function last month, a pop-out markets data window that puts a real-time markets ticker in the corner of your screen. It's part of the newspaper's ongoing "WSJ Everywhere" mantra, and an attempt to keep readers connected with the Journal in an ever-fracturing and narrowing media world.
New York Times Drops BlackBerry App (Reuters)
BlackBerry users can no longer use the official New York Times app to read news stories over their devices, in a fresh blow to Research In Motion, the maker of the smartphone once considered an essential tool for business professionals. CNET "Currently, our mobile website offers a more complete New York Times experience than the NYTimes app native to your device," the NYT wrote in an announcement to its customers. "We've made the decision to consolidate our efforts and concentrate on delivering you the best possible experience through our mobile site."
CNN Hires New Anchor for Weekend Mornings (TVNewser)
Victor Blackwell joins CNN as an Atlanta-based anchor and correspondent and will co-host CNN Newsroom Saturday mornings with Randi Kaye. TVSpy Blackwell joins CNN from WPBF, the ABC affiliate for West Palm Beach, where he anchors the 5, 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts alongside Tiffany Kenney. Prior to that, he worked at WLTV-WJXX in Jacksonville. HuffPost The CNN Newsroom post was previously held by T.J. Holmes, who left the network in December 2011 for BET. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media He has been honored with an Emmy award, several regional Emmy nominations, two Telly awards, several Associated Press awards and honors from the Society of Professional Journalists.
Atlantic Media's Quartz Fills Out Team (Adweek)
Atlantic Media Co.'s forthcoming business site, Quartz, is taking shape with some new editorial hires to lead areas -- including what editor-in-chief Kevin Delaney said would be an innovative approach to commentary.