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Morning Media Newsfeed 09.28.12

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Dish Purportedly in Talks with Viacom to Change the Economics of Pay TV (SocialTimes)
Earlier this year Dish Network made headlines when they dropped AMC, to the dismay of Mad Men, Walking Dead and Breaking Bad fans everywhere. In "out with the old, in with the new" fashion, Bloomberg reported Thursday that Dish may now be in talks with Viacom Inc.'s MTV and other networks about offering their channels on the Web, a move that "could shift the economics of the pay-TV industry." Bloomberg In addition to Viacom, the negotiations involve the Spanish-language broadcaster Univision Communications Inc. and Scripps Networks Interactive Inc., owner of the Food Network and HGTV, said people familiar with the plan, who asked not to be named because the talks are private. Chicago Tribune / Reuters "Dish is approaching all programmers with this and some folks are still hearing them out," the source added. Several programmers were not interested in speaking with Dish about an Internet-based service because they pay for expensive rights to broadcast live sports. CNET The idea of creating virtual multichannel video programming distribution (MVPD) has been around a while. Cable subscribers have long said that they would rather pay just for the shows they actually watch, instead of the current system, which requires them to pay a bulk price that covers scads of shows they're uninterested in. The Atlantic Wire However, from what we've seen with similar propositions, it might cost more than subscribers are willing to pay. GigaOM It makes sense that the price of any such offering would be a stumbling block. If it's too low, Viacom won't sign on. if it's too high, consumers won't bite.

Morning Show Ratings: Week of Sept. 17 and Q3 2012 (TVNewser)
Good Morning America wins its fourth week in a row. In fact, GMA had its widest lead on Today in both Total Viewers (884,000) and younger viewers (237,000) in more than 18 years. The Washington Post / AP GMA has won every week since the London Olympics, the last time Today had the advantage. ABC's big week also came without co-host Robin Roberts, who underwent a bone marrow transplant and is hospitalized. B&C GMA also won the third quarter of 2012 in total viewers, the first time the ABC show won a quarter in 17 years, averaging 4.757 million total viewers to Today's 4.588 million.

Surprise! Deborah Needleman Joins T: The New York Times Style Magazine (FishbowlNY)
Guess what? Deborah Needleman has been denying that she was leaving The Wall Street Journal for T: The New York Times Style Magazine, but she did anyway! NYT / Media Decoder Needleman, 48, is taking over a franchise that publishes 15 magazines a year and is closely followed in the fashion industry. She will replace Sally Singer, a former Vogue editor who left the Times in August after running the T magazines for two years. WWD / Memo Pad "Deborah is a creative and innovative editor with an impeccable sense of style and design. As we look to expand and extend T and continue to evolve it for our loyal and sophisticated New York Times audience, we will rely on Deborah's broad range of experience and creative energy," said Jill Abramson, executive editor of The New York Times. New York / The Cut Rumors of Needleman taking over T have plagued her since the job opened up. She was considered an obvious forerunner for the job as the WSJ had seen robust ad dollars under her leadership while T's declined under Singer (indeed, Singer's departure was reportedly due to lackluster ad sales).

Report: Instagram Tops Twitter in August (AllFacebook)
If a picture is worth 1,000 words, it's certainly worth more than 140 characters, so it should come as no surprise that Facebook-owned photo-sharing application Instagram topped Twitter in terms of average daily active users and time spent on the site for the month of August, according to data provided by comScore to AllThingsD. AllThingsD It says that throughout August, Instagram had an average of 7.3 million daily active users -- or DAUs, in Facebook parlance. That tops Twitter's 6.9 million DAUs over the same period of time. WSJ / Digits A lot of Twitter's active users -- 140 million as of March -- still access the application from the desktop. In June, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo said about 60 percent of the service's users access Twitter through a mobile device. And Instagram is solely a mobile service. CNET It turns out that more people in the U.S. like to spend more time taking, sharing, and gazing at pictures than tweeting and reading tweets. But don't worry Twitter, many of those more than 80 million registered Instagrammers are flowing their pictures into Twitter, and you are going to pep up your own image-sharing service, especially now that you have new restrictions on other photo-sharing services that use your API. Wired The photo-sharing app's astonishing growth underscores the growing momentum of mobile-native apps, and the potential of said apps to open wide leads over traditional websites.

One-Third of Adults Under 30 Get News on Social Networks Now (Poynter / MediaWire)
For American adults under 30, social media has far surpassed newspapers and has equaled TV as a primary source of daily news, according to a new study of news consumption trends by the Pew Research Center for the People & The Press. CNET Social-networking sites as a source for news grew from 9 percent to 19 percent in the last two years. Among the social-networking sites, 13 percent of respondents got some news from Twitter, and Twitter users are avid consumers of news. San Francisco Chronicle / The Tech Chronicles "The transformation of the nation's news landscape has already taken a heavy toll on print news sources, particularly print newspapers," the report said. "But there are now signs that television news -- which so far has held onto its audience through the rise of the Internet -- also is increasingly vulnerable, as it may be losing its hold on the next generation of news consumers." Politico / Dylan Byers on Media So, convergence continues.

Time Inc.'s Lang Announces Shakeup (Adweek)
Time Inc.'s Laura Lang Thursday bumped up Paul Caine to the role of group president, signaling an emphasis on global growth at a company facing a tough business climate. Caine, who has quickly established himself as Lang's right-hand man, continues as chief revenue officer, a role he got under Lang's short-lived predecessor Jack Griffin. NY Post / Media Ink While insiders are still worried that there could be a new round of cutbacks in the short term, most of the emphasis in the new alignment is on trying to grab more ad dollars for digital and print properties. That's not too surprising in a division where operating profit tumbled 40 percent in the quarter ended June 30 -- and the outlook for the current quarter is also bleak. Ad Age / Media News Time Inc. is introducing a digital ad unit that pairs its editorial content with brands' marketing messages on Time Inc. properties and beyond. The product, which Time Inc. is calling Amplify, is one of the company's first tangible moves to boost digital revenue since Lang joined in January from the digital agency Digitas.

Is The Atlantic Closing the Magazine? (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
In a move that can't have pleased their ad sales team, the chiefs at Atlantic Media told the New York Times' David Carr this week that they're not confident in the future of print. "It's become very, very clear to me that digital trumps print, and that pure digital, without any legacy costs, massively trumps print," Atlantic Media owner David Bradley tells Carr. GigaOM While it has gotten attention recently for the launch of its new online business offering, Atlantic Media has been making a lot of innovative and interesting moves in transforming its business from print to digital -- moves that other media companies would do well to emulate.

Advocacy Groups Call for Presidential Debate Contracts to be Released (TVNewser)
Well in advance of the Presidential debates, the two campaigns sign a secret contract that outlines every single detail of what will transpire. The dates, locations, moderators, podiums, even the pens and paper the candidates use is fair game. The agreements also put limitations on what the moderators may and may not do. HuffPost The debates are always a highlight of any election season, but they are also routinely criticized for their exclusion of third-party candidates, their corporate funding, and the control exerted over them by the Democrats and Republicans.

Facebook Launches Service to Send Real-Life Gifts (Yahoo! News / AP)
Facebook is rolling out a service called Gifts which, as its name suggests, lets users send chocolate, coffee, socks and other real-life presents to one another. Facebook Gifts launched Thursday to a subset of users in the U.S. and will roll out to more over the coming months as people begin to send gifts to each other. The Telegraph Facebook will collect the credit card details of members and then allow both the sender and the receiver to track the progress of the delivery. The gifts are also linked to birthday and event reminders which already appear on Facebook. LA Times It marks Facebook's long-awaited entry into mobile and online commerce that could help the company regain its luster on Wall Street. With Gifts, Facebook is sticking its toe in the water of a competitive online business dominated by giants such as Amazon.com and eBay.

Victim No. 1 in Jerry Sandusky Trial Has Book Deal (Yahoo! News / AP)
A key witness against convicted child molester and former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, known in court papers as Victim 1, has a book deal and will soon reveal his identity, a publisher announced Thursday. Ballantine Bantam Dell said that Silent No More: Victim #1's Fight for Justice Against Jerry Sandusky, is coming out Oct. 23. The memoir will be co-written by the victim's mother and psychologist and "will share how he survived years of shame and secrecy, harassment and accusation, before reporting Sandusky's actions to the authorities, and will offer a hopeful and inspiring message for victims of abuse," Ballantine announced. LA Times / Nation Now The question of identifying the victims, known by numbers in court documents, was litigated before the trial. Judge John M. Cleland eventually ruled against some of the victims who requested that they be allowed to testify using a pseudonym, but he also noted that the media usually does not identify sexual abuse victims. The media followed the hint and withheld the names.

Michael Savage Leaves Radio Show After Legal Win (The Boston Globe / AP)
Michael Savage's talk show left the airwaves Thursday after the conservative host won a legal battle with his longtime employer, although his attorney said discussions with new networks are already under way. Savage posted a message on his website Thursday evening under the headline "Free at Last!" that said he was free to work with any station or network from now on. He said he "will not be heard on the radio for some time."

Fandango.com Hires Away Entertainment Weekly's Longtime Oscar Expert (NYT / Media Decoder)
In a blow to Entertainment Weekly, the magazine's longtime Oscar expert, Dave Karger, is jumping ship for a new job at the movie ticket seller Fandango.com. "It's a tremendous opportunity that was impossible to turn down," Karger said by telephone Thursday of his new role, which will be the newly created position of chief correspondent.

Samuel L. Jackson Reads Wake the F*** Up to Support Barack Obama (GalleyCat)
Actor Samuel L. Jackson has recorded Wake the F*** Up, a campaign video for the Jewish Council for Education and Research that parodies his enormously popular audiobook reading of Adam Mansbach's Go the F*** to Sleep. CNN / Political Ticker... In the nearly four-minute video told like a children's book, Jackson narrates a metrical tale of disenchanted Obama fans who have since dialed down their support. WSJ / Washington Wire "Hell no it can't wait, your lives will be affected. Romney and Ryan will gut Medicare if they're elected. Ask the fact checkers, those two are fact duckers," Jackson says to a pair of randy grandparents. "What do you want us to do?" asks the grandmother. "Say 'Hell no, motherf---ers!'" yells the actor, wearing his trademark Kangol cap. NY Post The Jewish pro-Obama super PAC also funded Sarah Silverman's provocative YouTube video where she makes a tongue-in-cheek offer of "free lesbian sex" to casino magnate Sheldon Adelson to stop him from donating to Romney's campaign.

New York Times Digital Chief Martin Nisenholtz Resurfaces with Sulia (Forbes / Mixed Media)
There's retirement and then there's retirement. When Martin Nisenholtz stepped down from his post as chief of digital operations at The New York Times Co. last year, he clearly wasn't ready for a life of long naps in an easy chair. Nisenholtz has joined the board of Sulia, the fast-growing subject-based social network.

Microsoft Invests in Klout; Integrates Data into Bing (ZDNet)
Microsoft is making a "strategic investment" of an undisclosed size in social-media vendor Klout, company officials announced on its Bing Community blog on Thursday. On Bing, Microsoft is going to display Klout data -- including a person's Klout score and topics they are "influential" about -- on the new Bing Sidebar pane for those users who can and want to see this information.

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