Morning Media Newsfeed 08.09.12
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News Corp. Posts Q4 Loss, Takes $2.8 Billion Charge (AllThingsD)
News Corp. missed its quarterly numbers Wednesday by reporting adjusted earnings of 32 cents a share on revenue of $8.4 billion; the Street was expecting 32 cents and $8.7 billion. TheWrap It posted a fiscal fourth-quarter net loss of $1.55 billion, or 64 cents per share, compared with a profit of $683 million, or 26 cents per share, a year ago. LA Times / Company Town The company said it generated revenue of $8.4 billion, a decline of 7 percent, from the nearly $9 billion it took in during the year-earlier period. Strength at the company's key cable TV networks, including FX and Fox News Channel, were weighed down by issues elsewhere in the company. paidContent Suddenly, you can see why News Corp. is eager to split its news, TV and movie businesses in two: Operating income in the group's existing "publishing" division -- comprising Dow Jones, WSJ, The Daily, New York Post, UK and Australian newspapers and HarperCollins -- has halved in the last year, according to the group's Wednesday disclosure of earnings for the fourth quarter ending June 30. Capital New York News Corp. is "on course" to separate its publishing and entertainment holdings into two distinct, publicly-traded companies, according to president and chief operating officer Chase Carey. HuffPost / AP Movie studio revenue fell 14 percent to $1.74 billion, as the company failed to match the box office success of last year's Rio. Revenue from its Fox broadcast TV network and stations fell 3 percent to $1.08 billion, while revenue from its Sky Italia satellite TV company fell 15 percent to $880 million due to subscriber losses amid a weak Italian economy. WSJ / Corruption Currents News Corp. reported Wednesday that it took a $224 million charge on its fiscal full-year results relating to the costs of investigating a myriad of scandals that began with the closure of its weekly tabloid, News of the World. Forbes / Mixed Media Close observers of the Murdoch dynasty got a rare treat during News Corp.'s fiscal-year-end earnings call: an appearance from James Murdoch, the erstwhile heir apparent to 81-year-old chairman Rupert. Bloomberg Annual publishing profit fell 31 percent to $597 million, partly because of shrinking advertising revenue at the Australian newspapers as well as the closure of the News of the World newspaper, the company said.
Seventy Journalists Killed in Six Months (International News Safety Institute)
At least 70 journalists and support staff were killed while on assignment in the first half of this year, making it one of the bloodiest periods of recent times. HuffPost The International News Safety Institute, which is dedicated to the safety of the media, released the results of its Killing The Messenger survey Wednesday. The first half of 2012 proved especially bloody for members of the press. In comparison, 56 journalists were killed during the same period last year.
$28 Million in Cuts Proposed at Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News (The Philly Post)
Wednesday, the leadership of the Newspaper Guild, the union that represents many employees of the Inquirer, Daily News, and philly.com, sent the following email to its members, making it clear that recent slashes to personnel were just the beginning. JimRomenesko.com Here's what CEO Bob Hall sent to Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News employees Wednesday. Poynter / MediaWire Interstate General Media bought the papers four months ago. In an interview with Poynter at the time they purchased the paper, new owner Lewis Katz laid out a three-point plan for the newspapers.
The Highest-Paid Media Figures (HuffPost)
TV Guide is out with its annual list of the highest-paid television stars, and there are plenty of media figures in its ranks. Among the top were Matt Lauer -- who signed an eye-popping $21.5 million contract after much speculation that he could leave Today -- and Anderson Cooper, who kicks off the second season of his daytime show in September. New York Daily News But if you're looking for the biggest on-camera earner on TV, the verdict is clear: Judge Judy Sheindlin, whose annual pay for her syndicated afternoon court show is $45 million, according to the annual "Who Earns What" survey by TV Guide. Vanity Fair Here are the five most depressing revelations from the list. TV Guide The television industry can thank the feature-film business for creating the current buyers' market.
Tearful Lolo Jones on New York Times: 'It Was Just Heartbreaking. I Don't Think I Should Be Ripped Apart by Media' (TVNewser)
Lolo Jones, who finished fourth in the finals of the 100-meter hurdles Tuesday, went on Today Wednesday morning and, fighting back tears, said a Saturday New York Times story that compared her to Anna Kournikova, the former tennis pro known more for her good looks than her play on the court, didn't help her performance. Mediaite Calling it heartbreaking, Jones also went on to note that the media "just tore me apart" before her race, rather than supporting her. FishbowlNY Jones added that the Times also conveniently left out the fact that she is quite accomplished. NYT / Media Decoder Jones was among a number of female athletes whose appearance became a topic of discussion during these Games. After her gold-medal-winning performance last week, the gymnast Gabby Douglas was written about in blogs and in online media not because of her floor routine, but in reaction to Twitter messages -- that appeared to come largely from black women and men -- which had labeled her hair unsuitably unkempt. HuffPost / AP Jones has no Olympic or world outdoor championship medals, and has been criticized in some places for occupying a prominent spot in her sport's limited spotlight despite the less-than-perfect results.
Liberty Media to Split Off Starz (NYT / DealBook)
If merging and splitting up businesses were an Olympic sport, the empire of the media mogul John C. Malone would win gold. WSJ / Deal Journal John Malone and Liberty Media are mobilizing cash for the takeover attempt of the rest of Sirius XM Radio. The media giant is spinning out its Starz premium-cable channel as a way to bring in cash for its satellite radio hopes. NYT / Media Decoder "There are no plans on Starz at this time other than to grow it." That's what Malone told a New York Times reporter last month at the Sun Valley, Idaho, media conference.
Al Gore to Lead Current TV's Convention Coverage (TheWrap)
Al Gore is heading back on the campaign trail -- albeit as a media figure this time. Mediaite Wednesday afternoon Current TV announced that the network's founder, former Vice President Al Gore, will host the channel's coverage of both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions. THR / The Live Feed Current TV personalities Jennifer Granholm (the former Michigan governor), Eliot Spitzer (the former New York governor and Keith Olbermann replacement) and Young Turks host Cenk Uygur will join Gore during a nightly roundtable. TVNewser California lieutenant governor Gavin Newsom will join the panel for the RNC coverage. Also, David Shuster and Michael Shure will report from both conventions and new Current TV hosts Joy Behar and John Fugelsang will contribute. Adweek The decision to put Gore on the air does not inspire much confidence in the network's future.
Joy Press Named LA Times Books and Culture Editor (LA Times / Jacket Copy)
Wednesday the LA Times announced the appointment of Joy Press as books and culture editor. GalleyCat Press has worked as a book critic and TV critic for the Village Voice, also serving as culture editor at Salon and the Voice. FishbowlLA Sixteen years after co-authoring The Sex Revolt: Gender, Rebellion, and Rock'N'Roll, cool LA journo couple Simon Reynolds and Joy Press are still going strong.
Google Test Includes Gmail Users' Emails in Search Results (LA Times / Tech Now)
Google is looking to get even more personal. AllThingsD In a major move to integrate personal search and Web search, Google is adding some users' Gmail into their search results as a "limited field trial," it said Wednesday. TechCrunch After all, a lot of useful personal information is now piling up in your inbox, so Google plans to make that information available in your Web searches (assuming you're signed in to your account). The Associated Press Such Gmail results will typically be shown to the right of the main results, though in some instances, the top of the search page will highlight an answer extracted directly from an email. For example, the request "my flight" will show specific airline information imported from Gmail. Something similar could eventually happen when searching for a restaurant reservation or tickets to a concert.
Beck to Release New Album as Book of Sheet Music (Rolling Stone)
Beck will release a new album in December, but it won't come in the form of MP3s, CD or vinyl -- instead, Beck Hansen's Song Reader will be released by the publishing house McSweeney's as individual pieces of sheet music. GalleyCat The 108-page package will feature booklets, lyrics, sheet music and covers for 20 different songs -- but the reader must play the music themselves. Billboard There will also be an introduction by Slate's Jody Rosen and a foreword from the mastermind himself, Beck. WSJ / SpeakEasy For the release of his Song Reader, Beck teamed up with the publishing house McSweeney's, founded by author Dave Eggers and known for its riffs on the arcane.
Stop the Presses: The Oregonian May Not be a Daily Newspaper Much Longer (Williamette Week)
The Oregonian as a daily newspaper is facing a final deadline. The 162-year-old newspaper -- once considered one of the nation's best -- is losing readers and advertisers in a state where it dominated the media landscape for decades. Soon, the newspaper may no longer be publishing every day of the week. Poynter / MediaWire Like The Times-Picayune, The Press-Register and the Flint Journal, The Oregonian is owned by Advance Publications. And like those papers, The Oregonian is online via Advance's standard Web treatment, a bloggy homepage that doesn't speak to the printed paper. Unlike those papers, The Oregonian has no plans to cut staff and print frequency, publisher N. Christian Anderson III tells the Williamette Week.
On a Hiring Jag, Businessweek Brings in a New Tech Editor, Doug Cantor (Capital New York)
Bloomberg Businessweek appears to be on a hiring tear. The latest addition to its masthead is Doug Cantor, who began a new job as Businessweek's technology editor Monday. He replaces Barrett Sheridan, who left to pursue a fellowship at the Columbia Journalism School. He joins the magazine from Popular Science, where he was a senior editor. He also previously worked as an editor at Esquire. FishbowlNY Additionally, Jeff Muskus and Nick Summers have joined the magazine. Muskus was most recently a senior editor at The Huffington Post and is now an associate editor at Businessweek. Summers comes to Businessweek from Newsweek/The Daily Beast. Summers is now a finance correspondent.
Sue Simmons to Play Self on Law & Order (NY Post)
Sue Simmons is dropping anchor into the acting world. New York / Daily Intel New Yorkers with a Sue Simmons-sized void in their hearts since the 32-year veteran of the nightly news left Channel 4 will be temporarily whole again when Law & Order: SVU premieres in September. FishbowlNY Simmons shot the episode in late July, and plays, who else, Sue Simmons. As the fictional Simmons, she's seen covering breaking news, live on the scene of a scandal encompassing the NYPD, the DA's office, and two escort agencies. TVSpy During her final WNBC newscast in May, Simmons noted she hoped to be employed elsewhere, "even if it's maybe just once a week."
Washington Post's TruthTeller Project Hopes to Birth Real-Time Fact-Checking (Poynter / Regret the Error)
Steven Ginsberg saw the future of fact-checking while listening to a politician tell lies in Iowa last summer.
Univision, ABC Start Hiring Process for New Channel (TVNewser)
Last week we told you about Univision and ABC News completing the agreement to launch a cable news channel. Now, in what is the first step moving toward programming and launch decisions, the two networks are advertising for four senior management positions.