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Tuesday, Oct 23

Morning Media Newsfeed 10.23.12

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Bob Schieffer's 'Light Hand' Lets Candidates 'Go At It as Much as Possible' (TVNewser)
Unlike the first two presidential debates, the moderator this time didn't make news. Bob Schieffer did what a moderator is supposed to do: ask the question and get out of the way. Politico Enter Schieffer, who disarmed the candidates with a Texas septuagenarian's unassuming charm and facilitated their conversation with the calm confidence that comes from two decades as anchor of a Sunday morning news show. Yahoo! News / AP Schieffer, the Face the Nation host who was moderating his third presidential debate, gave the two men wide latitude to carry the conversation, even when they tried to talk over one another. How that played out in the public depended on the taste of the viewer, as seen by two messages that popped up back-to-back on Twitter: "Little known fact. Moderator Bob Schieffer left the room 18 minutes ago," one wag wrote. But it was followed quickly by another person who thought Schieffer "did a pretty good job of asking mostly decent questions and then getting out of the way. Debate's not about him." HuffPost Schieffer played a muted role during the debate. Jim Lehrer, who was criticized for his stumbling attempts to control the first debate, actually seemed to be more of a presence, because he tried to intervene more. Schieffer seemed to disappear for minutes at a time. The Washington Post / Erik Wemple Lehrer said that the idea during his much-panned performance this year was to let the candidates have at themselves. Experiment complete. Now let's try a different one: Put a smash-mouth interviewer on the mound, someone in the mold of CNN's Soledad O'Brien. Let no equivocation, no weak answer go unhectored. LA Times President Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney made their closing appeals to voters in a final debate that featured an unusual reversal of strategy -- Obama adopted the typical challenger's stance of underscoring differences, while Romney repeatedly sought to mute them. The Washington Post / Election Blog 2012 Another meaty exchange, this one with its own peculiar personality. Was Romney too passive this time, or did he look presidential? Was Obama too aggressive, or did he score points effectively? Did Romney's grin make him look silly, or was it OK? The Hill / Twitter Room More than one million tweets were sent in the first half hour of the debate, according to Twitter, which is on pace with the number sent by this point in the first two presidential debates. Reuters Obama's "horses and bayonets" comments provided the latest debate-related phrase to become popular on social media. The hash tag "horsesandbayonets" trended on Twitter, where the mock user name @horsesandbayonettes was quickly born.

New York Times Staffers Stage Action, Considering Byline Strike Over Contract (HuffPost)
Hundreds of New York Times staffers are ready to participate in a byline strike in their latest demonstration over contract talks. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media "Over the last few days, hundreds of people from every department, including many of our best known journalists, have quietly signed pledges to withhold their bylines, photo credits, and producing credits. They have also pledged to work strictly to the terms of the contract," the so-called "Mobilization Committee" writes in a memo. "We don't know yet if we will have to go down this road, but it is vital that we be prepared. If you haven't had a chance to sign up yet, ask around." Talking Points Memo Grant Glickson, chairman of the Times' unit of the Newspaper Guild of New York, told TPM that mediation is going well so far, but there are still differences to settle. "[W]e are still miles apart on the big ticket financial items: wages, health care, pension and severance." NYT / Media Decoder Hundreds of members of The New York Times Company's newsroom staff staged a brief rally Monday afternoon related to the lack of progress on a new contract with the company. The action lasted for less than 10 minutes.

BBC Boss to Face Lawmaker Committee over Scandal (Yahoo! News / AP)
The director general of the BBC is set to face a lawmaker committee to explain why the broadcaster pulled an exposé unmasking one of its most popular entertainers as a pedophile. George Entwistle will face lawmakers on the Culture Media and Sport Select Committee on Tuesday. NYT George Entwistle was questioned just a day after the BBC broadcast an examination by the Panorama program into a decision by the editor of another program, Newsnight, to cancel an investigation last December into accusations of abuse against Jimmy Savile, a television personality who police now say may have victimized more than 200 girls. Daily Mail In a statement Monday, Harriet Harman, Labour's shadow culture secretary, said: "With every day, new information comes to light of the pervasive and appalling nature of Jimmy Savile's sexual assaults." Sky News Entwistle admitted that the way the Jim'll Fix It star behaved and how the BBC failed to confront him raised "questions of trust" for the corporation. He vowed that the broadcaster would do "everything we can to put it right" but denied that the broadcaster's response to date had been chaotic.

Clear Channel Outdoor to Pull Billboards Warning Voter Fraud Is a Felony (Ad Age / Campaign Trail)
Clear Channel Outdoor said it will remove anonymous billboards warning against voter fraud in the swing states of Ohio and Wisconsin. The billboards began appearing in black and Hispanic communities in Cleveland, Columbus and Milwaukee last week, according to the advocacy group, which argued that the ads were designed to intimidate voters. CNN Money Online petitions calling for the billboards' removal garnered more than 100,000 signatures. "In a lot of communities where they were putting these ads up, there's already so much misinformation about voting," said Rashad Robinson, executive director of U.S. News & World Report The signs showed a large gavel and also a red banner that said voter fraud was "punishable by up to three and a half years in prison and a $10,000 fine." Wisconsin Gazette Clear Channel said the signs violated its policy against anonymous political messages and that it made a mistake in accepting the contract. National Review This country has a long tradition of free speech and anonymous political commentary, starting with the Federalist Papers. How have we reached a point where political speech can be so muzzled?

Yahoo! Releases First Marissa Mayer-Era Earnings Statement for Q3 (SocialTimes)
Yahoo! has released its first quarterly earnings statement since Marissa Mayer left Google to become the company's new president and CEO. Mayer, as well as the analysts, are calling the third quarter a "solid" one for the company, which slightly exceeded expectations at $1.089 billion in revenue and a 2 percent increase over last year. Reuters Mayer, who earned a reputation for decisive action and intensity during her 13-year stint at Google Inc, has spent her first months as Yahoo! Inc CEO quietly moving the Internet pioneer back to its roots in technology. Forbes / Mixed Media Mayer wants Yahoo! to be a leader in mobile, but she doesn't have big ambitions for local. She's not planning a big restructuring but does anticipate making some smallish acquisitions. She sees a lot of upside in search but even more in display. Politico On Monday's call with analysts, Mayer said that the job was perfect for her because her career at Google had been built around the core products at Yahoo! -- search, ads, mobile and news. "We have a solid foundation on which now to grow," she said. "Yahoo! hasn't capitalized on the mobile opportunity... Our top priority is a focused, coherent mobile strategy."

Jay-Z and Beyoncé Can't Trademark Their Kid's Name (PRNewser)
We're not quite sure why Jay-Z and Beyoncé would want to fight a Boston-based wedding planning company for the rights to the phrase "Blue Ivy." The only possible scenario we can imagine involves a special line of Rocawear for toddlers, but something tells us that's already a thing (please tell us that's not already a thing). Time / Newsfeed Queen B reportedly filed an application in January to trademark the name of her firstborn, in part to protect the moniker for future use in a line of baby products. But it turns out their bundle of joy was not the only one to have been dubbed Blue Ivy in recent years: the name was first in use by a Boston-based wedding planner company, Blue Ivy Events, which became embroiled in the battle to save its name after the copyright filing. E! Online / Ask Anything However, experts say, the development does not stop the Carters from moving forward in their push to trademark Blue Ivy in all the other areas they've earmarked. Like, you know, electric hair curlers and non-medicated hair care preparations. If they want.

Smaller iPad Expected Tuesday, But at What Price? (Yahoo! News / AP)
The price tag remains a big question mark as Apple prepares Tuesday to unveil what is expected to be a smaller iPad. In the case of the "iPad Mini" (the real name is not known), tech bloggers and analysts expect a device with a screen measuring 7.85 inches on the diagonal, making it about half the size of the regular iPad. ABC News / Tech This Out Last month Amazon released its new Kindle Fire HD, which starts at $199. Similarly, Google and Asus launched the Nexus 7 in June for $199. Barnes & Noble released the Nook HD three weeks ago, which -- you guessed it -- starts at $199. According to 9to5Mac, a popular Apple news website, the smaller iPad will start at $329. Fast Company Our money is on $299, but we're open to other possibilities. It's even plausible that Apple will adjust the iPod Touch's price downward so it doesn't clash, and threaten sales of the Mini.

People Magazine Gifts ABC Sitcom with Sexiest Product Placement Alive (FishbowlLA)
To playfully set the stage for this year's "Sexiest Man Alive" issue, the folks at People are taking product placement to a whole new level. The night before the official announcement on Nov. 14 of the 2012 SMA recipient, the storyline of ABC sitcom Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 will be all about the determination of this year's honoree. HuffPost "James Van Der Beek is gonna try and get on the cover of People magazine's 'Sexiest Man Alive,'" executive producer Nahnatchka Khan said. "Chloe takes over as managing editor of People for three days to try and get him on the cover. She just comes in and fires two people and says she's been transferred from the London office."

Facebook Gives a Gift to Investors (WSJ)
Investors need to rethink Facebook's potential. What if the social-networking company is able to scoop up a few dollars per user per month, instead of the paltry few cents it does now? AllFacebook Facebook appears to be testing yet another type of ad unit: Suggested posts, which are showing up in both the desktop and mobile news feeds of some users of the social network, as reported by sister blog Inside Facebook.

Larry King Hosts Third-Party Faceoff (Politico)
Larry King says Gary Johnson should have been on stage with Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama -- but the libertarian presidential nominee's only chance to debate comes during the third-party showdown that King will moderate on Tuesday.

Why You Need a Lunch Break (GalleyCat)
Did you take a lunch break today? If you are like too many writers, publishing folks and media professionals, you probably didn't leave your desk. Every Wednesday, Take Back Your Lunch participants step away for a real lunch hour, part of a movement founded by The Way We're Working Isn't Working author Tony Schwartz.

ReadWriteWeb Rebrands, Hires Dan Lyons as EIC (paidContent)
Technology blog ReadWriteWeb, which was acquired by Say Media last December, has hired "Fake Steve Jobs" author Dan Lyons as editor-in-chief. The site is also getting a tablet-friendly redesign and a new name, ReadWrite.

Pulitzer-Winner Sara Ganim on Working the Crime Beat in the Digital Age (Nieman Journalism Lab)
"I use Twitter mostly to get the word out, especially when it's a really intense situation where news is breaking by the minute or second, and a lot of people are working on a story."

Federal Agency to Switch to iPhone, Drop BlackBerry (Reuters)
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency said it will end its contract with BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd in favor of Apple Inc's iPhone, dealing a new blow to RIM just months before it launches a vital new device.

Technical Writing Ranks Among Top 10 Paid Virtual Jobs (MediaJobsDaily)
According to a piece on Forbes, there's good news we pretty much already knew: Virtual jobs aren't only here to stay, they're an opportunity to create big bucks. That is, if you select the right path. In addition to careers like telepharmacists and telenurses (and yes, even phone sex operators seem to bring in mighty greenbacks per the piece), technical writers are included in the top 10 list with an average annual salary of $63,000.

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