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Wednesday, Dec 19

Morning Media Newsfeed 12.19.12

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Nielsen to Buy Arbitron, Forming TV, Radio Rating Giant (Chicago Tribune / Reuters)
Nielsen Holdings NV, the largest provider of television viewership ratings, will now dominate radio listening ratings as well. Nielsen on Tuesday struck a deal to acquire its radio counterpart, Arbitron Inc, for $1.26 billion. The deal creates a powerhouse that places the measurement of audience for TV and radio under the control of one company. Multichannel News At one time, Arbitron competed with Nielsen in providing local television ratings. More recently, Arbitron has focused on radio ratings and measuring out-of-home media consumption. Nielsen still has a competitor in Rentrak, which is using data from cable and satellite set-top boxes to generate national and local TV ratings. Bloomberg If it passes regulatory hurdles, the deal will extend Nielsen's dominance in television to radio. The company wants to offer its advertisers a unified system that measures audiences across multiple forms of media, making it easier for them to make ad-buying decisions -- whether on TV, radio or the Web. The move follows a partnership with Twitter Inc. Monday that will monitor discussions of TV shows on the social network. NYT / Media Decoder Through the deal with Arbitron, Nielsen should be able to track even more of consumers' media consumption and buying habits. In a presentation to investors and Wall Street analysts, Nielsen said that by adding Arbitron's radio data to its portfolio, it would be able to increase the total amount of time in a given day it could track the listening and viewing habits of the average American to seven hours from the current five.

Residents, Members of Media Want Journalists to Leave Newtown (HuffPost)
Newtown, Conn. continued to endure a crush of reporters on Tuesday, as its residents struggled with the aftermath of Friday's shooting. Many have expressed that they want the media to leave -- and some journalists, it seems, feel the same way. B&C Though the media crush has thinned considerably, there remains an uneasy relationship between the reporters and the residents. A woman keeps driving by, say the station staffers, telling everyone to "get the hell out." "They do not want us here," said one Connecticut photographer. Poynter / MediaWire Four days after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, it's not just Newtown residents griping about how members of the media are still camping out. Reporters are wondering what they're still doing there, too. Good point, but in some of these reports, it's hard to tell where genuine local irritation leaves off and media-person self-loathing begins. Politico Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin -- who was harshly criticized for her response to the January 2011 mass shooting in Tucson, Ariz. -- is telling Americans in the wake of Newtown to put their faith in God and ignore political and media "elites." NYT / Media Decoder The topics of guns and gun use continue to resonate across the media landscape in the days after the elementary school massacre in Newtown. One show that may be affected is the popular reality show Sons of Guns, which is shown on the Discovery Channel. The show's third season finished airing in October, but on Tuesday a spokeswoman for the network, Laurie Goldberg, could not state definitively what future, if any, the show might have on Discovery.

Time Reveals Its Short List for Person of the Year 2012 (Time)
The unveiling of Time's Person of the Year is less than 24 hours away, and on the Today show Tuesday morning, hosts named the eight frontrunners for this year's cover. The short list rounds up an elite list of famous names in business, politics and science. VentureBeat Tech execs Tim Cook and Marissa Mayer have joined the president of Egypt, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and yes, Barack Obama himself on the shortlist of people being considered for Time's Person of the Year. As has a little-known scientist who proved Einstein right. PolicyMic After a tremendously emotional weekend spent reading about the horrors at Sandy Brook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., I cannot help but feel all the more certain about the young person I believe should be Time's Person of the Year; happily I'm far from alone in this suggestion. Her name is Malala Yousafzai and she is 15 years old. Salon 4chan pranksters may have been able to hack the Time magazine reader's poll to declare North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un the top candidate for Person of the Year, but editors at Time have ignored the joke. Time released its short list Tuesday, which does not include the supreme leader.

Time Promotes Martha Nelson to Editor-in-Chief (FishbowlNY)
Martha Nelson, an editorial director at Time since 2010, has been promoted to editor-in-chief. Nelson, who assumes the top editorial position next month, becomes only the seventh editor-in-chief in the company's 90-year history, and the first woman to hold that role at Time. The Washington Post / AP Time Inc. is a division of Time Warner and one of the largest media companies in the world, publishing magazines like Time, People and Sports Illustrated. The company says Nelson is the ideal leader for the business, given her background in print and digital publishing. The company has been trying to generate more revenue from the Internet and mobile devices to offset shrinking print advertising revenue.

Penguin Settles Price Fixing Suit with the DOJ (GalleyCat)
Penguin Group has reached a proposed settlement with the Department of Justice (DOJ) over the price fixing lawsuit filed in April 2012. Macmillan (as Holtzbrinck Publishers LLC) and Apple are the only two remaining parties who have not settled with the DOJ about an alleged conspiracy to fix eBook prices. Digital Book World The move is in preparation for Penguin's merger with Random House, which is the only one of the so-called big-six publishing houses to avoid investigation for eBook price-fixing by the DOJ and European Commission. A settlement between Penguin and European regulators is reportedly expected. NYT / Media Decoder The company said in its statement, "It is also in everyone's interests that the proposed Penguin Random House company should begin life with a clean sheet of paper." In April, the Justice Department filed a lawsuit accusing five major publishing houses and Apple of conspiring to fix the price of eBooks. These five had moved from a wholesale pricing model that allowed retailers to charge what they wanted to a system that allowed publishers to begin setting their own eBook prices, what was known as "agency pricing."

CBS Dominates Week in TV Ratings (Yahoo! News / AP)
CBS had little competition for dominance last week in the television ratings. The network had 17 of the 25 most-watched programs on the air last week, according to the Nielsen company. It beat second-place NBC by an average of nearly four million viewers a night last week, and also took the 18-to-49-year-old demographic that advertisers seek. TVNewser 60 Minutes -- which wasn't quite 60 minutes -- made Nielsen's Top 10 list for the third consecutive week, landing at No. 2 with 19.63 million total viewers, its largest audience in four years. The show got a boost from the overtime Dallas Cowboys / Pittsburgh Steelers game and was shortened to about 35 minutes in half the country due to live coverage of President Obama's address at a memorial service in Newtown, Conn. which began at 8:35 p.m. ET.

Nate Silver: Person of the Year (Out)
Nate Silver's deal with The New York Times runs out next summer, and whether he should stay there or blow up his blog, FiveThirtyEight, into a stand-alone site is a question he is still mulling. And, of course, looming over it all is 2016, another opportunity for Silver to assert his dominance in the art of statistical analysis. New York / Daily Intelligencer Over the past six weeks, Silver hasn't been shy about letting his adversaries and detractors (mostly, Politico and "pundits") know just how much they suck, an undertaking that continued Tuesday with the release of a profile in Out magazine, which named Silver its Person of the Year. Herewith, a compilation of Silver's post-election trash talk, ranked in order of trashiness. FishbowlDC Dylan Byers has never explained the assertion he boldly shared during the presidential race that Silver was a "one-term celebrity" as his headline blared. And in Tuesday's story in Out, in which Silver is named their Person of the Year, he takes Byers down about 25 notches.

New Leader for Pearson Unit That Includes Financial Times (NYT / Media Decoder)
John Ridding will take over as chief executive of the FT Group, a subsidiary of Pearson that includes the Financial Times and half of The Economist, the company said Tuesday. Reuters Speculation has been swirling that Pearson, known largely for its education business, is looking to exit the newspaper industry -- in part because Pearson CEO Marjorie Scardino is leaving the company. Scardino famously said that FT would be sold "over my dead body." In October, she announced that she is stepping down from her role as CEO.

Time Warner Cable to Drop Arts Channel Ovation (LA Times / Company Town)
Time Warner Cable plans to drop the small Santa Monica-based channel, Ovation, from its programming lineup at year's end -- a blow to the independent network that has attempted to elevate TV coverage of the arts and contemporary culture.

Facebook Prepares to Bring Video Ads to News Feed, Aims for TV Dollars (Ad Age / Digital)
Get ready for video ads in your news feed. Facebook is set to unveil a new video-ad product in the first half of next year in its largest attempt to date to attract big swaths of ad dollars from TV advertisers, according to several industry executives who have been briefed on the company's plans over the past few weeks.

Richard Engel's Return and the Risks of Reporting in Syria (The New Yorker / News Desk)
In a civil war that has cost the lives thus far of at least 40,000 Syrians, hatred and suspicions are rife, and the unique ethnic and sectarian alchemy that made Syria such a distinctive place for centuries has come asunder. As the country's social structure unravels, so too have its traditional relationships. As important as it is for reporters to go there, as Engel bravely did, to witness these realities, it becomes highly dangerous for reporters to move around under such circumstances.

Instagram to Outraged Users: We Won't Sell Your Photos (The Wrap / Media Alley)
Instagram responded to outraged users on Tuesday, saying it would not be selling their photos without their permission -- despite language in newly minted user guidelines that seemed to suggest the photo-sharing site claimed the rights to all photos.

Vice Purchases i-D, the British Style Magazine (NYT / Media Decoder)
Vice, the multimedia company known for its in-your-face journalistic style, is expanding into fashion coverage by buying the British style publication i-D magazine. WWD / Memo Pad The thinking behind the acquisition is to create a video-driven fashion channel. Founders Terry and Tricia Jones will stay on at i-D as partners, and its editorial and sales staff will combine with Vice. It's not clear whether there would be redundancies.

Martha MacCallum Re-Ups with Fox News (TVNewser)
Fox News Channel has inked a new multi-year deal with anchor Martha MacCallum. Under the terms of the new agreement she will stay on as the co-anchor of America's Newsroom from 9-11 a.m. alongside Bill Hemmer. "Martha brings unique enthusiasm and talent to delivering the news and connects incredibly well with our viewers," said Fox News CEO Roger Ailes in a statement. "We look forward to her continuing to play a valuable role in the network's success."

Report Blames Chaos, Not Cover-Up, for BBC Scandal (HuffPost / AP)
An internal report into the BBC's handling of a pedophilia scandal surrounding one of its best-known children's presenters is blaming weak management for failing to get to grips with the story. But the review has absolved any BBC executives of trying to bury the potentially embarrassing story, saying that confusion and poor leadership were to blame for the fact that a planned expose about the presenter, Jimmy Savile, was never aired.

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