Media News

Thursday, Sep 08

Morning Media Newsfeed 09.08.11

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Arrington Out At AOL (For Real This Time) (Fortune / Term Sheet)
Fortune has learned that AOL executives have decided to terminate TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington. It is unclear how this will officially occur. Maybe a pink slip. Maybe Arrington submits a (public?) letter of resignation. Maybe Tim Armstrong simply gives Arrington a phone call, and he quickly dashes off a note to TechCrunch employees on his iPad. In other words, the ending has been written, but much of the final chapter remains blank. This includes the fate of CrunchFund, which still includes that pesky AOL commitment (which it technically could default on, but that would lead to all sorts of other problems).

Presidential Address Change Forces Time's 9/11 Event To Replace Hillary Clinton With Giuliani (Yahoo! News / The Cutline)
The move of President Barack Obama's address to a joint session of Congress to Thursday to accommodate Wednesday's Republican primary debate has indirectly claimed a media-related casualty. TVNewser: NBC will still air the 2011 National Football League kickoff game Thursday evening, but Obama's speech on jobs and the economy means that the pregame show will be moved to cable.

Morning News Lays Off Employees As Ad Decline Continues (Dallas Business Journal)
The Dallas Morning News laid off a reported 38 employees Tuesday as the paper's parent company, A.H. Belo, contends with a continued decline in advertising revenues at its newspapers.

Nancy Gibbs, Author Of The Most Cover Stories In Time's History, Named Deputy Managing Editor (Yahoo! News / The Cutline)
Nancy Gibbs, Time executive editor and writer of the most cover stories in the publication's history -- including its Sept. 14, 2001 issue -- has been named deputy managing editor at the magazine. FishbowlDC: Besides holding the record for most covers written, Gibbs has chronicled a huge array of issues and news stories, from presidential elections and Columbine to Katrina and 9/11. She is a National Magazine Award recipient and the co-author of New York Times best-seller The Preacher and the Presidents: Billy Graham in the White House.

Times Names Joe Kahn Its New Foreign Editor (NYT / Media Decoder)
The New York Times named a new foreign editor Wednesday, the latest in a series of high-level appointments by Jill Abramson, who became executive editor this week.

Wall Street Journal Page One Editor Alix Freedman Named Reuters Ethics Editor (NY Observer)
Alix M. Freedman has been named global editor for ethics and standards at Reuters. She comes from The Wall Street Journal, where she was deputy managing editor and page one editor.

Here's What Top Yahoo! Execs Told Employees About Firing The CEO (Business Insider / Silicon Alley Insider)
Yahoo! co-founders/board members Jerry Yang and David Filo -- along with top executives Ross Levinsohn, Tim Morse, and Blake Irving -- held a companywide meeting Wednesday. The point of the meeting was to explain why the company fired CEO Carol Bartz Tuesday night and what happens next. WSJ / Deal Journal: It almost happened under her predecessor. And now, with the firing of Bartz after a rocky two-and-a-half years, is Yahoo! ripe for a sale, or a breakup? Business Insider / Silicon Alley Insider: After Bartz was fired, co-founder Yang told employees that the company is not for sale. In an all-hands meeting, Yang said: "You don't ask your CEO to leave and then start a sales process." But a source familiar with Yahoo!'s board proceedings tells us that Yahoo! is very much for sale. Harvard Business Review: Bartz isn't the one to blame for her failure. The people to blame for Yahoo!'s failed turnaround sit on the company's board. Yahoo!'s board made a terrible decision in appointing Bartz to handle the turnaround. By firing her, they merely attempted to placate themselves. Yahoo!'s shareholders should be waiting to rejoice until the new chief executive is announced. Business Insider / Silicon Alley Insider: If Yahoo!'s board is smart, they'll do their best to get Hulu CEO Jason Kilar as their next CEO. Business Insider / Silicon Alley Insider: "Im takn over as tha CEO of Yahoo. Need sum of tha Snoop Dogg content ya digg. Nuff Said," Snoop Dogg wrote in a tweet Tuesday night. CNET: Bartz is now eligible for a hefty severance package. NYT: "I've just been fired." With those four words, Bartz did something Tuesday afternoon that dismissed managers almost never do: She told the truth. Business Insider / Silicon Alley Insider: Her tenure lasted 30 months, a period filled with a few ups and many more downs. The former Autodesk CEO never produced the turnaround the board or the stockholders hoped, and she finds herself without a gig. That's not to say that the period was without excitement or notable moments. We picked out some of the best from the past two-and-a-half years.

How High Can Fees For Sports Rights Go? (LA Times)
When the National Football League kicks off its regular season Thursday night at Green Bay's storied Lambeau Field, fans will notice some new rules aimed at making the game less violent. But player safety is not the sole motivation of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. He knows having the best players on the field will keep fans tuned in, which results in billions of dollars in payments from the television networks that carry NFL games.

Car And Driver Gets In The Facebook Game (minOnline)
In a novel partnership between a magazine brand and a social media app, Hearst's venerable Car and Driver will be highlighted within the Car Town Facebook game.

NBCU Names Epstein CFO
NBC Universal said Wednesday that it has named Morgan Stanley managing director Stuart Epstein as its new chief financial officer.

Liberty Has Money To Burn (Multichannel News)
With as much as $10 billion in available liquidity after the planned spin of its Liberty Interactive unit later this month, Liberty Media is preparing to put that money to work, including acquisitions and share buybacks, chairman John Malone told an audience at its annual meeting of shareholders Wednesday.

Adobe Will Support Apple's Upcoming Newsstand, But Is This Really The Future? (ReadWriteWeb)
Adobe announced Wednesday that its Digital Publishing Suite will be ready when iOS 5 and Newsstand go live.

Paton: Too Early To Say Whether MediaNews Paywalls Stay Up (paidContent)
Journal Register CEO John Paton has been a vocal opponent of using paywalls to increase digital revenue for newspapers, as have his advisory board members -- Jeff Jarvis, Emily Bell, and Jay Rosen. But what happens now that he is also CEO of MediaNews Group, which already has more than two-dozen paywall experiments running, and running a new company that manages both? Nieman Journalism Lab: The big newspaper news Wednesday morning was that two of the nation's largest remaining chains, Journal Register and MediaNews Group, are executing something like a merger -- without-merging. Journal Register is creating a new company, Digital First Media, which will "manage" both chains. Nieman Journalism Lab: Wednesday's move may mark just the beginning of a local newspaper roll-up, resulting in the United States' first truly national local news(paper) company. There's a long way to go to get there; newspapers have always been a less-consolidated industry.

Ticker Taped: The 9/11 News Crawl (NY Observer)
At 10:49 a.m. on Sept. 11, 21 minutes after the north tower of the World Trade Center began to collapse, Fox News launched a news ticker -- a ribbon of all-caps text along the bottom of the screen made up of headlines from scenes occurring off-camera, in rural Pennsylvania, and at the Pentagon, which indicated that the imagery shown was not a horrible accident. At 11:01, CNN had followed suit, and MSNBC got a crawl going by 2 p.m. that day.

No, Licensing Journalists Isn't The Answer (GigaOM)
Is the media industry in turmoil? Clearly it is, with publishers fighting declines in circulation and advertising revenue, combined with competition from digital-native entities such as blog networks and the "democracy of distribution" that comes from social media tools like Twitter and Facebook. Journalism itself is even said to be in jeopardy, or at least the journalism we are used to. So what's to be done? Some are recommending that journalists be licensed by some kind of official body, so we can get "real" journalism from professionals -- but these kinds of solutions would create even worse problems than the ones they are trying to solve.

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