The Morning Newsfeed: 01.24.07
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ABC's Cuomo Narrowly Escapes Injury in Iraq Roadside Bombing (WaPo)
ABC newsman Chris Cuomo narrowly escaped harm in Iraq yesterday when a roadside explosion crippled the armored Humvee he was riding in but the shrapnel failed to fully penetrate the vehicle. "I got very, very lucky," Cuomo said. He praised "the greatness of the soldiers" involved: "I know if I had been there with any other group of individuals, I would not be able to have this conversation." USAT: Tuesday's attack was similar to one that critically wounded ABC News anchor Bob Woodruff a year ago. "That came rushing back pretty quickly," ABC News spokesman Jeff Schneider says.
Rupe Enters Tribune Bid Battle With Play for Newsday (FT)
Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. has joined the Chandler family in its bid for Tribune Company with an eye to taking a stake in New York's Newsday newspaper. The Long Island-based paper is one of Tribune's largest, along with the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune. The media group also includes 23 television stations. NYT: Any expression of interest by Mr. Murdoch could quickly turn the lagging auction for Tribune into a higher-stakes game. LAT: Broad-Burkle bid for Tribune likely to remain in play.
Ex-Page Sixer Jared Paul Stern Cleared in Burklegate (NYO)
Stern was widely rumored to be under investigation for extortion after an April 7, 2006, article in the Daily News reported that he had asked billionaire Ron Burkle for nearly a quarter of a million dollars in return for favorable coverage in the New York Post. Last week, Jared Paul Stern quietly, anticlimactically got word that he was not going to be charged with a crime by the Department of Justice.
Despite layoffs in the air, Time editor Richard Stengel has continued with his magazine makeover, seeking a sleeker stable of big-name writers. He recently approached four New York Times staffers about joining the newsweekly: columnists Tom Friedman and Maureen Dowd, national legal correspondent Adam Liptak and reporter Sarah Lyall at the paper's London bureau.
Fox News and CNN Spar Over Obama Report (NYT)
A disputed report on the Web site of a conservative magazine about Senator Barack Obama's childhood schooling kicked off a pointed exchange this week between the rival cable news networks CNN and Fox News, when CNN seemed to make an overt effort both to debunk the report and to question the quality of Fox News' journalism. FishbowlNY: Anderson Cooper: "They didn't check the facts. We did."
Exec Took CNBC's Bartiromo for $50,000 Jet Ride (NYP)
The controversial trans-Pacific corporate jet jaunt that ousted Citigroup exec Todd Thomson took with glamorous CNBC anchor Maria Bartiromo set the New York banking giant back almost $50,000. Based on prevailing operating rates for a swanky Gulfstream executive class jet, Citi largely underwrote the ritzy flight of the high-profile anchor to the tune of between $2,300 and $4,000 per hour.
While Wikipedia is known as the encyclopedia that anyone can tweak, founder Jimmy Wales and his cadre of volunteer editors, writers and moderators have blocked public-relations firms, campaign workers and anyone else perceived as having a conflict of interest from posting fluff or slanting entries. So paying for Wikipedia copy is considered a definite no-no.
Following Cuts, Dow Jones Awards Bonuses to CEO, WSJ Publisher (Reuters)
Dow Jones awarded its chief executive a bonus of nearly $900,000 in shares, and awarded the publisher of the Wall Street Journal a bonus of nearly $500,000 in shares. The company said earlier this month it would cut dozens of jobs in its enterprise media group. It also said it would cut more costs with a redesign of the Journal, including the debut this month of a narrower paper.
Yahoo's New Ad Portal to Debut Early (FT)
Yahoo will roll out the commercial version of its next-generation search advertising portal ahead of schedule in an effort to regain ground lost to Google, the world's biggest Internet search group. The announcement came as Yahoo, struggling to keep up with its arch-rival in the lucrative market for search advertising, reported a better-than-expected fourth-quarter performance. WaPo: Yahoo's profit takes a nosedive.
The paper said it is closing its three foreign bureaus as part of efforts to trim costs, ending more than three decades of reporting from staff members based overseas. Calling it a "period of hard choices," editor Martin Baron said in a memo that closing bureaus in Berlin, Bogota, and Jerusalem avoids cutting an additional "dozen or so" newsroom jobs. WSJ: Bureau closings reflect larger industry trend.
Ex-JFK Jr. Girlfriend Snags $1.2 Million Deal for Tell-All (Gatecrasher)
Actress Christina Haag, a former girlfriend and college housemate of the Camelot prince, has secured the surprising advance for her book, and it might be Madonna's name that made this a million-dollar proposal. The Kennedy scion reportedly had a sexual fling with the singer while he was dating Haag. CNN's Christiane Amanpour, who was a Brown housemate as well, is also certain to appear.
Boozing With the Bloggers (NYO)
Chris Shott: The blogosphere may be boundless, but the Manhattanites who prop it up with constant commentary every day have tended to materialize at night in the densely liquor-licensed area south of East Houston Street ... It's the physical manifestation of years of electronic linkage, vis-a-vis reading and commenting on each other's Web sites, which eventually results in actual face-to-face meetings.
Christina Hernandez: In the name of an "exclusive" with the man charged with kidnapping a Missouri boy and suspected of kidnapping another and holding him hostage for more than four years, the New York Post has brought journalistic ethics into the limelight. But besides the Post's questionable ethics, the newspaper's hypocrisy when it comes to journalistic limits are even worse.
Murdoch Reportedly Planning British Newsweekly (Brand Republic)
News International is believed to be launching a weekly news, comment and analysis magazine that could draw on the editorial resources of The Times of London. The company registered the magazine title Spectrum in October and insiders have indicated that the news analysis magazine genre would be an area of interest.
Porn Industry May Determine Which Hi-Def TV Format Wins Out (WSJ)
The competition between the two high-def formats known as Blu-ray and HD DVD is muddled by a number of factors, including accusations by adult-entertainment companies that the Blu-ray camp is discouraging DVD manufacturers from accepting their business because it doesn't want to be associated with adult content.