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Big Changes in Tech Journalism: ‘Fake Steve Jobs’ Is Your New Valleywag

Dan LyonsYesterday we learned of a couple of big changes in the Silicon Valley tech journalism game: the head of Valleywag is headed to The Verge and her replacement will be the writer/marketer formerly known as “Fake Steve Jobs.”

Nitasha Tiku, a seasoned reporter who has written for many pubs including New York magazine and BetaBeat (where she had the good humor to share her staff’s reactions to our post on “the world’s first Vine press release“), will be senior West Coast writer at the Vox property. Business Insider broke that news Thursday morning, and Re/code followed with a report that Dan Lyons, currently marketing fellow at HubSpot, will be her replacement.

In case you hoped that this move will mean a kinder, gentler Valleywag, think again: here’s what Lyons told us about 9to5Mac’s Apple PR reveal back in September:

“I have no problem with Apple being as manipulative as it possibly can. That is what PR is supposed to do, and Apple is very good at PR. The real culprits are the reporters and bloggers who play along.”

In other words, he does not play along.

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Anna Wintour Basically Admits That Putting Kimye on the Cover of Vogue Was a PR Stunt

anna wintourAnna Wintour sat down with former CNN reporter Alina Cho on Monday at the Metropolitan Museum to talk about a number of fashion-related topics. Among them: that Kimye cover of Vogue

Quoth Wintour:

I see the role of Vogue to reflect what’s going on in the culture. The first celebrity that I put on the cover of Vogue was Madonna, and that was considered completely controversial at the time, too. It’s such a long time ago probably no one remembers, but she was a very controversial figure. Now she’s part of the establishment. I think if we just remain deeply tasteful and just put deeply tasteful people on the cover, it would be a rather boring magazine! Nobody would talk about us. It’s very important that people do talk about us. 

Anna Wintour speaks the truth.

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Angry Tech Exec’s Note to NYT Reporter Must Be Seen to Be Believed

Last night we learned that the stereotypical tech execs featured on HBO’s Silicon Valley were not so far from reality.

You probably noticed that lots of journalists were tweeting/writing bad things about Uber yesterday, especially after reports of easy employee access to the “God View” tool that allows the company to track every one of its riders.

Turns out that a few (allegedly) high-ranking “technologists” have even less respect for “the media” than, say, your average Fox News opinionator.

Last night, New York Times tech writer Mike Isaac shared an anonymous hatemail received from a self-described “tech executive” who thinks the media deserves a bit of comeuppance:

Read the whole thing if you have time — it’s more than slightly insane. Highlights after the jump.

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Now That Paper Broke The Internet, Where Does It Go From Here?

kim-kardashian-paper-magazine1Paper magazine set out to #BreaktheInternet with their racy cover of Kim Karashian (and the fully nude photos that were later revealed).

It was certainly a publicity win for Kim Kardashian. She was all over the internet, the hashtag was trending for days, and experts say her brand will not be tarnished in the least by any ensuing controversy.

And for Paper – which normally doesn’t get this sort of mass play — this cover put the arts and culture magazine’s name on everyone’s screens. The key will be taking this buzz and making it last longer than 15 minutes.

We got in touch with the outlet to find out what sort of impact this cover had and what they’re going to do to build on their newfound notoriety. Read more

UPDATE: MSNBC Is Ready for a Rebranding

MSNBC Opinions

It was October 2010 when MSNBC pushed all of its chips to the left side of the aisle with the ad campaign “Lean Forward.

Minneapolis ad agency Mono even procured the talents of Spike Lee to direct the commercial spots announcing the change. A big campaign. A big name. A big change for American network news. It was a gamble that network execs believed would pay off. From Rachel Maddow to Chris Matthews, the network was set to become the antithesis to FOX News.

And then the bloodletting of 2014 happened, causing the network’s president Phil Griffin to reconsider its position. Our sister site TVNewser broke the story yesterday via an internal memo.

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The Atlantic Wants ‘Tech in the Home’ Pitches

Print

Here’s an interesting tidbit from The Atlantic Technology Channel this morning: the magazine is looking for great stories about adventures with tech in the home.

It’s true that this call for pitches is really aimed at freelance writers, but given the fact that home tech is one of the industry’s hottest forward-facing topics at the moment (arguably second only to wearables), it could certainly be a great opportunity to work with journalists who specialize in that subject.

From the post:

“We want to hear your stories about homes, about the physical and digital spaces where you live, about what draws you to them, and the defining rituals that happen within their walls.

Remember: Technology doesn’t just mean the Internet and gadgets—we want your adventures in architecture and systems and ways of thinking.”

They don’t want your standard formatted pitch. Also:

“We hope you’ll do a little searching before you pitch to see if the concept you’re looking into has been done before—not just by us, but by anybody.”

So this is a challenging one. But the resulting series would be a great place to showcase home tech products in action and their practical effects on everyday life.

Even Tom Brokaw Has Cell Phone Issues (on Live TV)

brokaw news centerJournalists and PR practitioners alike should be able to name a “Mount Rushmore” of TV anchors.

Names that would adorn the rocks above could include the likes of Murrow, Jennings, Cronkite, Brinkley, Schieffer. One of the heads being engraved would almost certainly be that of Tom Brokaw.

The man epitomizes what it means to not get caught up in the pomp and circumstance of holograms, 36-headed pundit desks, 140-inch monitors, and sweet pyrotechnics.

(In other words, CNN would never hire the guy.)

Yet, the iconic anchorman may need a refresher course on how those newfangled cell phones work. In the below clip from MSNBC’s election coverage, the alarm going off is Mr. Brokaw’s grocery store alert.

#PRFails even happen to the great ones. Buck up, folks who forget to silence that stupid phone during new business pitches…you’re in good company!

SheKnows.com Just Became the Queen of Women’s Lifestyle Media

sheknows

SheKnows Best!

(From left: BlogHer’s Lisa Stone; SheKnows’ Phillipe Guelton, Samantha Skey; BlogHer’s Jory Des Jardins, Elisa Camahort Page)

PR practitioners, get your databases ready because everything in your blogosphere is about to change — SheKnows just acquired BlogHer in an effort to bolster native content projects…and to become the top women’s media group in the world.

In the evolving world of PR, it’s our primary objective to stay on top of the ebbs and flows of emerging media. You don’t have to speak nerd to understand. Suffice to say, the Internet thingy is here to stay, which is why you can’t assume that your only pitch sources are going to be print and TV media. Whether old-school journos care to admit it, bloggers have serious street cred.

And this global takeover move proves it.

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Fusion Is Your Tech Media Company to Watch

fusion logo

Today in Media Trends, Fusion has become an outlet to watch in the weeks and months ahead for anyone working in the tech/startup sectors.

Not familiar with Fusion? That’s understandable — in the past we may have confused it with the Canadian version of MTV. But the cable channel, created by a partnership between Disney/ABC TV and Univision, just turned one year old and made a slew of big hires that hints at its ambitions to lead the crowded tech news space:

If you have clients in tech, these people just got a lot more important. You should probably click on their names and follow them all on Twitter if you don’t already.

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PR Vet to Run Communications at Vox Media

Vox Media

The “media professionals crossing over into PR” trend doesn’t always hold true: today we learned that industry veteran Fay Sliger has joined Vox Media as its communications director.

Prior to joining Vox, Sliger served as VP at New York firm High10 Media, which represents various publishing brands like The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard (both of which were coincidentally acquired by Mediabistro’s new parent company, Prometheus Global Media).

Sliger isn’t new to media by any means, though: High10 hired her straight from VICE, where she handled media relations and corporate comms and directed promo for several campaigns that VICE’s in-house creative team developed for clients. Before landing that gig, Sliger was a senior account director at Sunshine Sachs.

Quotes and tips on pitching after the jump.

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