Today's Headlines
Friday, 10/17/14

I Want Media Website to Go Dark After 14 Years Online
New York Post
Fourteen-year-old will go dark on Monday. Patrick Phillips, the founder of the media aggregation site, who sold it to Guggenheim/Prometheus Partners four years ago, is exiting. "We will be letting subscribers know that it will be going dark for a while."

Time Warner Execs Seen as Comic Book Superheroes
Hollywood Reporter
Shares of Time Warner rose as traders digested an investor day rife with news, followed by positive notes from analysts. "Like Bruce Wayne emerging from training as the Caped Crusader," one analyst said, "Time Warner management unveiled aggressive plans to flex its muscles."

Disney Interactive Chief: 'We Need to Change the Tires'
Jimmy Pitaro, president of Disney Interactive: "We like to say we need to change the tires as the car is driving down the highway. We're very focused on profitability and driving value for our shareholders. At the same time we need to be making investments today in new technologies."

Comcast Xfinity Has Bold Plans for Covering NASCAR
Associated Press
Comcast has innovative plans to beef up how fans follow NASCAR, from news stories flowing on a ticker during the week to expanded coverage from inside the pits on the weekends. NASCAR's potential future will be "just as clear on a mobile device" as it is on a big screen.

HBO, CBS: Paid Streaming Customer Fees to Add Up
Wall Street Journal
With HBO and CBS planning stand-alone digital services, the oft-maligned pay-TV bundle has begun to loosen. But cord-cutters should be careful what they wish for. A future where TV viewers subscribe to each channel individually could make the average cable TV bill seem like a bargain.

Report: Sports Fans Won't Cheer Rise of Internet TV
The $6-a-month ESPN charges cable companies for the best of pro sports is starting to look like a bargain. An online package that would include Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, plus three of the four major pro sports leagues, WWE wrestling, HBO, CBS and Tour de France racing would cost $102.54.

Broadcast Networks Still Sorting Out New TV Metrics
Wall Street Journal
What's the biggest hit of the new television season? That simple question has remained the same each fall for six decades, but the answer has gotten wildly more complicated. These days it depends on whom you ask, when and how they watch TV and where they hang out online.

Vice Media Preps Global TV Network for Generation Y
The youth-orientated online media outlet Vice is set to launch its first global TV network. Founder Shane Smith said the company wants its own terrestrial TV channel to gain a larger share of the world's advertising market. Vice will grow "because we are a voice that Gen Y trusts."

CNN Digital Head Exiting Amid Widespread Cutbacks
KC Estenson, SVP and general manager of, has been let go amid major cuts at the news network. Estenson, who has been with CNN since 2008, is among the most senior staffers to get swept up, as parent company Time Warner executes a widespread cost-cutting effort.

YouTube Stars, Amateurs Frustrated by Video Piracy
Daily News
Both YouTube stars and regular people with a Facebook page have had experiences of people stealing their work and posting it on websites to seek out advertising revenues. Experts warn people must be vigilant in tracking anything they put online to ensure it won't be stolen.

Google Mobile Ads Getting More Clicks, Less Money
Google still hasn't quite figured out the mobile advertising business. Shares slipped 2% in after-hours trading Thursday after the search giant reported quarterly sales that came up short of expectations, as well as another decline in the amount paid by advertisers when a user clicks on an ad.

Apple Pins Hopes on Thinner iPads, Payment Service
Apple has unveiled two new tablets, the $399 iPad Mini 3 and the $499 iPad Air 2. They are available for pre-order on Friday. CEO Tim Cook also said the much-awaited Apple Pay feature, which lets people pay for goods by simply tapping their iPhones to a reader, will launch on Monday.

Facebook, Instagram May Cause Anxiety Among Teens
The quest for likes and the fear of missing out can cause anxiety among teenage users of Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and other social media websites. According to a study by the University of Michigan, the more people checked Facebook, the worse they felt about their lives.

Whisper App Accused of Tracking Anonymous Users
LA Biz
Whisper's anonymous sharing app may not be so anonymous. The startup was accused by the Guardian of tracking the whereabouts of its users, even when they didn't opt into geolocation. The firm denied the report, with editor Neetzan Zimmerman calling it "lousy with falsehoods."

Groupon Directors Say They Need Spiritual Guidance
Crain's Chicago
Groupon directors have sought philosophical and spiritual guidance in how they live their lives and run their businesses. They revealed the personal details during a talk in Chicago. Ted Leonsis said he has followed the Dalai Lama to learn how happiness translates into business.

Twitter Partnership to Let Users Stream Music, Audio
Twitter will allow users to play podcasts, music and other audio clips direct from their timelines, or message feeds, via a new feature designed with audio-streaming service SoundCloud. For starters, Twitter has promised audio from the likes of the Washington Post and CNN.

News Corp Newspaper Chief Says Twitter Is 'Noise'
Evening Standard
Rupert Murdoch may love Twitter, but the boss of his U.K. newspapers has questioned the power of social media. News U.K. chief Mike Darcey, addressing a conference in London, insisted that the press still sets the agenda even though "noise" has "changed the environment."

Conde Nast to Launch Ars Technica Website in Britain
Conde Nast said it plans to launch Ars Technica in the U.K. in spring 2015. The website will offer technology news and reviews, trend analysis and advice. Nate Lanxon, editor of, will oversee editorial. "For 16 years, it has been one of the hottest brands in the U.S."

Hearst Magazines Fear Native Ads Undermine Brands
The Drum
Hearst Magazines U.K. is concerned that the use of native advertising is "undermining" brands and creating a poor customer experience for mobile users, said digital sales exec Stephen Edwards. The balance between the experience for consumers and for advertisers is a "big topic."

Forbes Offers Home Pages for Journalists, Advertisers
Forbes has rolled out individual home pages for every employee and BrandVoice partner. "Gone is the rigid, reverse chronology-only, blog-like utility," said product chief Lewis DVorkin. "Now, publishing on comes with freedoms previously not available on a news site."

Conde Nast's Vanity Fair Summit Rakes In $2 Million
New York Post
It has been a pretty tough year at Conde Nast. But the first-ever Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit last week in San Francisco seems to have been a bright spot. It now looks like it will become an annual event, with plenty of buzz not to mention $2 million in extra revenue.

New York Times Job Cuts Are Painful, Sulzberger Says
Capital New York
New York Times chief Arthur Sulzberger Jr. told a small audience at New York University that though the buyouts and layoffs taking place at his newspaper are "painful," they also are necessary to refocus the paper. "The skills necessary to succeed in this world are truly changing."

Los Angeles Times Video Channel Available on Roku
Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times has launched its originals channel on Roku, a streaming platform with more than 10 million players sold in the U.S. Roku's products are the first streaming devices to offer the Times's video productions. "Video is a key medium to bring our storytelling to life."

Wall Street Journal, Financial Times Face Russian Exit
Russian president Vladimir Putin's pals are said to be preparing to acquire Vedomosti, a leading Russian newspaper. Putin has signed a law capping foreign media ownership, meaning the Wall Street Journal and Financial Times, co-founders of the paper, must cut or sell their stakes.

Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News Websites Shuttering
Philadelphia Business
The websites for Philadelphia's Inquirer and Daily News will be closed, with becoming the sole location for the company's digital products. The changes were outlined in an email to employees. "We are still assessing the possibility of a future premium model for"

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Martha Stewart Licenses Out Her Magazines to Meredith
New York Post
After losing $30 million in publishing over the past two years, Martha Stewart is licensing her magazines to Meredith under a 10-year deal. The arrangement will enable the company to focus on its more successful merchandising arm. About 30 people are expected to be laid off.

New York Times T Magazine Celebrates 10th at Christie's
The T style magazine of the New York Times threw a party at Christie's to celebrate its 10th year. Throughout seven galleries, editor in chief Deborah Needleman installed the magazine by means of projected images. "Nowadays, the very act of consuming a magazine suggests luxury."

Conde Nast to Lay Off 70 to 80 Employees as Ads Falter
Wall Street Journal
Conde Nast is said to be expected to lay off 70 to 80 employees within the next week or two, primarily from the group that oversees advertising sales. This will be the first major round of layoffs at the magazine publisher since 2012. The print ad market has been tough so far this year.

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Expected to Cut Jobs
Daily News
Martha Stewart's minions are scrambling amid rumors that significant staff cuts are imminent. "It's coming," said one Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia insider. The cuts "are expected to happen sooner rather than later, and some staffers have already started packing their desks."

Meredith Is the Latest Publisher to Embrace Native Ads
Meredith has acknowledged that its financial performance has been depressed by the rise of automated ad buying. Now it's fighting back with the tool of publishers everywhere: native ads. Meredith's first such ads will appear this month on the relaunched

Cosmopolitan Magazine TV Show in the Works at NBC
Cosmopolitan is the latest glossy to get the Hollywood treatment, with NBC readying a single-camera comedy about a failed political blogger who becomes an editor at the magazine. The still-unnamed show will be co-produced by Cosmopolitan's Holly Whidden and Joanna Coles.

Newsweek Bitcoin 'Victim' Raising Money for Lawsuit
New York Post
Dorian Nakamoto, the man who claims he was wrongly identified by Newsweek as the founder of bitcoin, has created a website to try to crowd-source funds to sue the magazine. "I did not create, invent or otherwise work on bitcoin," he said days after the article appeared in March.

XXL Magazine: We're Not Going Out of Print After All
MTV News
For 17 years, XXL Magazine has been a staple within the hip-hop community, and though it was reported that the brand was planning to go all-digital, that apparently isn't the case. "We are going to continue doing magazines," said XXL editor in chief Vanessa Satten.

Macworld Expo to Shutter After Print Magazine Folds
The Verge
After deciding to shut down its print magazine and lay off most of its online staff, IDG is hitting pause on its annual gathering where big products like the first Apple iPhone were once unveiled. The Macworld Expo "is going on hiatus, and will not be taking place as planned in 2015."

Bloomberg Launches Media Source Content Platform
Talking Biz News
Bloomberg LP has unveiled an online platform called Media Source, designed to make it easier for broadcasters, publishers and others to access the company's media. Media Source showcases Bloomberg's library of photos, video footage, short video clips and full-length shows.

Vice Media Exposes Details of Murdoch Tabloid Breach
The FBI has some questions to answer after chat logs revealed a bureau informant played a role in the 2011 hacking of Rupert Murdoch's British Sun newspaper, along with the planting of a fake death notice about the media mogul. The chat logs were exposed in a report from Vice Media.

New York Times Rolls Out Archive of Vintage Print Ads
Advertising Age
Vintage ads that appeared in the New York Times are getting their own digital archive that will live on the company's website. Called Madison, in reference to Madison Avenue, the archive invites readers to sift through the ads, identify them and even transcribe their text.

Los Angeles Times, Orange County Register in Lawsuit
Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times has filed a lawsuit against the Orange County Register, accusing the embattled newspaper of breach of contract and failure to pay $2 million in delivery fees. The Times said the Register has consistently been late on payments for distributing its papers.

San Francisco Bay Guardian Closing After 48-Year Run
USA Today
The San Francisco Bay Guardian, the left-leaning alternative weekly in the Bay Area, said it has stopped publishing immediately after its parent company pulled funding for its operations. The newspaper "is not a viable business and has not been for many years."

BuzzFeed Ups Growth Czar, Redefines Publisher Role
BuzzFeed has promoted Dao Nguyen, its exec in charge of data and growth, to the newly created role of publisher. But that doesn't mean "publisher" in the traditional sense. Instead, Nguyen will head up "tech, product, data and everything related to the publishing platform."

Gannett Lab Seeks to Speed Up Spread of Innovation
When Gannett Digital created an interactive feature for the Des Moines Register called "Harvest of Change," it wasn't just notable because it incorporated the virtual reality headset Oculus Rift. It is an example of the work Gannett aims to spread across the company.

Washington Post Partners with Student Newspapers
The Washington Post has announced a software and technology partnership with the student newspapers at the University of Maryland and Columbia University. "The Post is building some of the most innovative technology in journalism, and we plan to license these products."

Politico Plans Site Relaunch Under New Editor Glasser
USA Today
Change is in the air at Politico under new editor Susan Glasser. The company's website can often seem a jumble. To remedy that, the Politico site will relaunch after the midterm elections in November. The new home page aims to "give more shape to the overwhelmingness."

New York Times Mulls Continuing Chess Column Online
Capital New York
The New York Times surprised readers on Sunday by appending a note to its long-running chess column: "This is the final chess column to run in the New York Times." The note may have been a bit premature, however: The column's online future is said to be an open question.

Orange County Register Names Casino Exec Publisher
Orange County Register
Richard Mirman, a former exec at Harrah's Entertainment, known in Las Vegas for his talents in casino marketing, has been named interim publisher and CEO of Freedom's Orange County Register. "My goal is to get the business on a trajectory of growth," he said.

Time Out New York Magazine Goes Free on Wednesday
Time Out New York
To celebrate its issue heralding the best in New York that is free, Time Out New York has created "a week of free." On Wednesday, the magazine will give away 150,000 copies of Time Out New York on the streets of the city, from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and again from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Hearst Names Head of Healthcare Business Operation
Hearst has named Gregory Dorn, MD, MPH as president of Hearst Health, the healthcare unit within the company's Hearst Business Media division. Dorn will oversee assets including First Databank. In 2013, Dorn was named deputy group head and EVP of Hearst Business Media.

Time Inc Staffers Reject Company's Final Contract Offer
Time Inc. employees who are Newspaper Guild of New York members turned down the company's final contract offer in a near unanimous vote. The package would cut benefits and compensation and would enable management to replace journalists with outsourced content.

Conde Nast Among Publishers Facing 'October Slasher'
Magazine publishers across the industry plan to take a closer look at 2015 budgets, following a difficult year. At Conde Nast, employees are speculating that the company plans to cut between 10% and 30% of the budget. The buzz at Time Inc. is that more layoffs are coming.

Penske Seeks Stronger Voice for Women's Wear Daily
Capital New York
Two months after Conde Nast announced it was selling Fairchild Fashion Media, the future of the group's crown jewel publication, Women's Wear Daily, is starting to come into focus. Last week, new owner Jay Penske convened the newspaper's senior staff to discuss strategy.

Vanity Fair Sees Silicon Valley as New Capital of Media
Washington Post
Vanity Fair has touted its so-called New Establishment list for a while. But with the arrival of the magazine's first technology conference in San Francisco last week, Silicon Valley emerges as the new media capital of the world shaping commerce and culture both.

Survey: Publishers Make U-Turn on Charging for Content
Publishers have been making a u-turn over charging for content, with only 5% saying they do or will charge over the next year, a drop of 9% year on year. Last year, 62% of publishers said they would or do charge for content, according to a survey of Association of Online Publishers members.

Tribune Names New Publishers in Florida, Connecticut
Chicago Tribune
Tribune has shuffled top leadership at its Florida and Connecticut newspapers. Nancy Meyer has been named publisher and CEO of the Orlando Sentinel, moving from her role running the Hartford Courant. Boston Globe veteran Rick Daniels will replace Meyer at the Courant.

Time Inc Former CTO Joins Digital Newsstand Magzter
Time Inc. former CTO Abe Cytryn has joined Magzter in the same role, as the digital newsstand company prepares a series of new features for both publishers and consumers. Cytryn and Magzter also plan to overhaul their app to emphasize discovery. "This is where I am most excited."

Bauer to Pursue Flat-Fee Sales of Digital Magazines
The future of digital magazine sales may be all-access packages. Bauer Media has entered a partnership with Readly, a Sweden-based service that provides readers flat-fee subscriptions to multiple magazines. Readly will offer access to Bauer's 100 digital titles for $9.99 per month.

Johnson Opens Digital Store for Ebony, Jet Magazines
Johnson Publishing has announced the launch of a digital store for Ebony and Jet, giving readers the ability to purchase content and branded merchandise. features streaming audio and video, downloadable music and videos, and access to archived content.

Vanity Fair's Carter: We Don't Compete with the Internet
Graydon Carter, editor in chief of Vanity Fair: "We're a monthly magazine, so we're not competing with the Internet. If you're a weekly or a daily I think it's rougher. We do something that you rarely get on the Internet. We tell great stories and they're in the hands of great writers."

New Yorker's Remnick: Our Festival Stands on Its Own
David Remnick, editor in chief of The New Yorker: "The New Yorker is not merely the magazine that comes out in print once a week. It's the website, it's the festival." The New Yorker Festival, which kicks off Friday, "three-dimensionalizes" the magazine. It's not just a bunch of dull panels."

Vogue China Displays New Apple Watch on Front Cover
The Drum
Vogue China has become the first fashion magazine across the globe to feature the Apple Watch on its cover. The November 2014 issue features model Liu Wen wearing the Apple Watch in 18-carat yellow gold. "Vogue China is following in the Vogue tradition of moving with the times."

Slate Online Magazine Former Editor Joins Atlas Obscura
Washington Post
David Plotz, who resigned as editor of Slate earlier this year, has become CEO of Atlas Obscura, a website that calls itself "the definitive guide to the world's wondrous and curious places." The site, which is seeking investors, runs on user-generated content and aims to be the "Nice Vice."

Vice, BuzzFeed Top News Sites Favored by Millennials
Vice, BuzzFeed, Slate, Wired and lead a chart that ranks 15 representative news websites by the percentage of their unique visitors who are millennials. Two magazines, tech-native Wired and in-motion Time, are finding lots of young readers on the Internet.

BuzzFeed, Re/code, Vice Chiefs Discuss Media's Future
Vanity Fair
BuzzFeed's Jonah Peretti, Re/code's Kara Swisher and Vice's Shane Smith gathered to talk media at Vanity Fair's New Establishment Summit, in a panel moderated by the New York Times's David Carr. Said Peretti: "The media industry can't provide the stuff the tech industry needs."


CBS Launches Subscription Service for Digital Video
CBS News
CBS is taking big leap into the digital space, announcing the launch of CBS All Access, a new digital subscription video on demand and live streaming service that will offer thousands of episodes from the broadcaster's current TV lineup, previous seasons and classic shows.

HBO Cutting Ties to Cable with New Streaming Option
Time Warner set off a social media chain reaction with a tweet announcing that it "will launch standalone HBO service in the U.S." HBO head Richard Plepler, speaking at a Time Warner investors gathering, said of the new streaming service: "This will be transformative for our company."

CBS's Showtime May Follow HBO with Online Offering
Showtime, the CBS-owned premium cable network, said it is considering following rival HBO in offering its programs online to viewers who aren't customers of pay-TV services. "The subscription model is ideally positioned to take advantage of developing technologies."

IHeartMedia Taps Microsoft Veteran as Marketing Chief
Advertising Age
Gayle Troberman, a Microsoft veteran who was more recently chief marketing and ideas officer at IPG Mediabrands, has joined iHeartMedia in the newly created role of EVP and chief marketing officer. Troberman was a consultant for Clear Channel on its name change to iHeartMedia.

Sirius XM Dealt New Blow in Lawsuit Over Older Music
Hollywood Reporter
Last month, a California judge granted summary judgment to Flo & Eddie of the Turtles who alleged that Sirius XM was misappropriating their songs without compensation. The decision has now swayed another judge who was presiding over a similar case brought by record giants.

CNN Called World's Best Known News Brand in Study
The Drum
CNN has been crowned the world's leading news brand across Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin America in an independent study from Ipsos. CNN was found to reach 40% of upscale consumers and decision-makers. Also: U.S. CNN is wielding the axe, with some 300 jobs to go.

CNBC Bringing Jay Leno Back to TV with Car Series
Associated Press
Jay Leno is returning to nightly TV. The former "Tonight Show" host's new prime-time venture, tentatively titled "Jay Leno's Garage," and based on his Emmy Award-winning web series, will premiere on CNBC in 2015, the network said. "This show will be about anything that rolls."

ABC: Neil Patrick Harris to Host Oscar Show in 2015
Associated Press
Neil Patrick Harris is going for an awards-show trifecta, set to host the 2015 Academy Awards after four hosting stints at Broadway's Tony Awards and two at TV's Emmy Awards. Hosting the Oscars is "a bucket list dream come true," he said. The ceremony will air Feb. 22 on ABC.

NBC Launches Its Own Version of ESPN's Grantland
NBC Sports Digital has launched SportsWorld, a microsite within dedicated to long-form storytelling stocked with stories, essays, videos and documentary films. The effort is an attempt to engage sports fans in a spin similar to ESPN's Grantland.

A&E, Activision Unveil Video Game for 'Duck Dynasty'
Multichannel News
The "Duck Dynasty" hunting adventure video game is now available on current and last-generation consoles, as announced by A&E and Activision. Acting as the hit show's family members, players will learn about duck hunting, while exploring airboat racing, fishing and more.

CNN to Eliminate 300 Jobs as Layoffs Get Underway
TV Newser
Layoffs have begun at CNN. As many as 300, or 8%, of the company's workforce is being cut in Atlanta, Washington, D.C., New York and Los Angeles. About 130 staffers have taken voluntary buyouts, while open positions are not being filled. About 170 cut positions will be layoffs.

Scripps Networks Offers Staff Buyouts to Cut Costs
Scripps Networks Interactive is offering some of its employees voluntary buyouts as a way to cut costs, signaling that tough times have come to the cable networks business. The move follows a similar offer by Turner Broadcasting, which is currently eliminating some 1,400 jobs.

Turner Preps Global Rollout of Boomerang Channel
Los Angeles Times
Turner Broadcasting has announced that its Boomerang cartoon channel is being relaunched and rebranded globally, in a bid to draw in bigger family audiences. Boomerang was launched in April 2000 as a home to animated classics from Hanna-Barbera and other cartoon libraries.

ESPN Star Simmons' Return Sets Intrigue in Motion
New York Times
Bill Simmons, whose suspension for calling NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a liar ends Wednesday, could be something of a litmus test for the power of individual brands in a shifting media landscape. Could he like Howard Stern and Glenn Beck before him strike out on his own?

Tribune Media Preps $400 Million Stock Repurchase
Chicago Tribune
Tribune Media, which has seen its valuation fall by more than a third since spinning off its publishing assets, has authorized a $400 million stock repurchase program. The move "demonstrates our confidence in the strength of our businesses," said CEO Peter Liguori.

Oprah's OWN, theSkimm in Digital Content Partnership
Lost Remote
Oprah Winfrey's network, OWN, and theSkimm, a fast-growing daily newsletter with a mostly female subscriber base, are expected to announce a digital content partnership. TheSkimm's founders will appear in a weekly web series for and the OWN YouTube channel.

Nielsen Redo Strips ABC News' Win Over NBC News
New York Times
The first fallout is in from the long-running misreporting of ratings by Nielsen, and ABC News has lost its best story of the year. Instead of toppling NBC's evening newscast during the week of Sept. 29 for the first time in over 260 weeks, it turns out that NBC News won that week.

NBC Correspondent Admits Violation of Quarantine
Associated Press
NBC News medical correspondent Nancy Snyderman has admitted that members of her crew violated a voluntary quarantine to protect against Ebola, a misstep that caused New Jersey health officials to make that quarantine mandatory. Snyderman and her crew "remain healthy."

ABC Drives Strong Ad Engagement In New York Taxis
ABC said it has strong viewer results and advertising engagement when it comes to an unusual TV effort to program New York City taxis. More than half of the viewers who ride in city taxis that have ABC programming recall at least one TV commercial on an unaided basis.

HBO to Live Stream Foo Fighters Concert on Facebook
Hollywood Reporter
HBO is celebrating the premiere of the documentary series "Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways" with a live streaming concert on Facebook. After the series debut Friday, the Foo Fighters will take to the stage for a show that will feature the first in-concert performance of their new single.

Survey: Many Millennials Say They're Not Paying for TV
The younger TV watchers are, the less likely they are to watch TV shows on actual TVs, according to a survey from comScore. In addition, a whopping 24% of 18-to-34-year-olds say they are not subscribing to pay TV. And more than half of those folks say they have cut the cord.

FX's 'American Horror Story' Sees Record Ratings
FX, the cable outlet owned by 21st Century Fox, said the debut of "American Horror Story: Freak Show" posted the network's highest ratings ever. The program attracted an audience of 10 million viewers, including 6.54 million in the younger age group advertisers target.

AMC 'Walking Dead' Most Popular Among the Young
"The Walking Dead," the AMC series about zombies, drew its largest audience ever and set a record for the network with its fifth season premiere. The show has become the most popular TV series among younger viewers, outdrawing the major broadcast networks.

MSNBC Eyes Canceling 'Ronan Farrow' in Shakeup
MSNBC reportedly will announce major programming changes sometime in the next month, including the cancellation of Ronan Farrow's afternoon program, "Ronan Farrow Daily." Farrow's program is said to average around 50,000 viewers in the key 25-to-54 demographic.

Nielsen Says Devices to Blame for TV Ratings Tumble
TV ratings at the biggest networks have been weak this fall, but Nielsen said the problem isn't how much people are watching. Nielsen head Steve Hasker said he believed the drop in prime-time TV ratings is the result of people watching on devices other than televisions.

Starz to Launch Streaming Service in Global Markets
Financial Times
Starz, the U.S. pay-TV network, has struck a deal to build an "over the top" video streaming service that will launch in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Latin America. The new Starz Play service will be created with the firm that helped launch HBO's streaming service in Nordic countries.

BSkyB Invests in Internet-Video Aggregator Pluto.TV
BSkyB has invested $500,000 in web-video startup Pluto.TV, whose previous investors include UTA CEO Jeremy Zimmer and Terry Semel's Windsor Media. Pluto.TV, launched this spring, pulls in video from across the web and organizes it in channels like "cats 24/7."

MSNBC Loses Ground to CNN as Global News Surges
New York Times
Opinionated MSNBC has seen its ratings hit one of the deepest skids in its history, with the third quarter of 2014 generating some record lows. Recent major news stories like ISIS and Ebola command a high degree of international reporting, which plays well to CNN's strengths.

NBC News Staffers Violate Voluntary Ebola Quarantine
The NBC News crew that had agreed to a voluntary 21-day quarantine after one of its cameraman tested positive for the Ebola virus has reportedly violated their agreement to separate themselves. The network is declining to comment on the matter, citing "privacy concerns."

Comcast Customer Who Lost Job Promises Lawsuit
Philadelphia Inquirer
A man who says he was fired after Comcast contacted his employer wants his name cleared and has threatened a lawsuit against the cable giant. The case is Comcast's latest customer service fiasco to go viral as the company seeks U.S. approval for its tie-up with Time Warner Cable.

TNT, USA, ESPN Decline Amid Rise of Cord 'Shaving'
Wall Street Journal
Faced with rising pay-TV bills, many consumers aren't so much "cutting the cord" as shaving it. That is, they are subscribing to pared-down packages that cost between $10 to $50 a month and don't include popular channels like TNT, USA, ESPN, CNN, Fox News, Disney and Discovery.

HBO's Plepler: Our Business Model Is Building Addicts
Vanity Fair
HBO CEO Richard Plepler: "Our model is building addicts as many as we can." The premium cable channel's strategy, he added, is based on the fact that HBO revenues come from subscriptions. HBO sells more subscriptions to people who "can't live without" their favorite shows.

CNN Gets Ratings Boost From New Show with Rowe
New York Times
CNN has received some validation for its new programming strategy. "Somebody's Gotta Do It," a new weekly show about unusual jobs, hosted by former "Dirty Jobs" guy Mike Rowe, opened to the best ratings yet for the cable news network's roster of original prime-time series.

Fox Sports 1 Reaches New High, Still Far Below ESPN
Game 4 of the National League Division Series between the Washington Nationals and San Francisco Giants this week gave Fox Sports 1 its largest audience since the network's launch. Some 3.92 million people tuned in. However, less than 4 million is piddling for rival ESPN.

NBC Super Bowl Halftime Show to Feature Katy Perry
New York Post
Katy Perry will perform at the Super Bowl halftime show, according to insiders. "A deal is being hammered out." Perry has been rumored as a contender for the coveted slot. Her bubble-gum pop brand could sweeten the image of a league that has been rocked by bad press.

CNBC Near Deal with Leno to Launch His Own Show
Hollywood Reporter
Jay Leno has been lining up his first regular TV hosting gig since leaving "The Tonight Show." Leno is said to be close to a deal to host a new show for NBC cable network sibling CNBC. The show will focus on Leno's longtime love of cars and will air in prime time, not late night.

NBC Wanted to Hire Stewart as Host of 'Meet the Press'
New York
NBC News president Deborah Turness is said to have held talks with Jon Stewart about hosting "Meet the Press" before Chuck Todd was chosen for the job. NBC was prepared to offer Stewart virtually "anything" to bring him over. "They were ready to back the Brink's truck up."

NBC News Boss Turness in Hot Seat Amid Ratings Slide
New York Post
A slide in ratings has turned up the heat on NBC News boss Deborah Turness, who has been on the hot seat since her arrival just over a year ago. NBC News chief Patricia Fili-Krushel drafted the British import to lead the news division in a more profitable direction.


Netflix Sees No 'Significant Impact' from Internet HBO
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has downplayed any possible competitive threat posed by HBO's newly announced U.S. standalone streaming service, saying it will merely join the ranks of Hulu Plus, Amazon Prime and others. "It's not much of a change in the competitive landscape."

Roku Makes Video Ad Push with a Network of Its Own
Wall Street Journal
Roku has been quietly building its own video ad network; aggregating inventory from a range of the "channels" on its over-the-top streaming platform, packaging it and offering it up for sale to marketers and agencies. It's a model reminiscent of the one commonly employed by cable TV.

Netflix to Begin Streaming Sitcom 'Friends' in January
Fans of the TV show "Friends" will be able to catch the entire series again courtesy of Netflix. The news was revealed via a tweet posted by Netflix with the simple headline: "They will all be there for you, Jan. 1, 2015," along with an embedded clip. The sitcom ran on NBC from 1994 to 2005.

YouTube Low-Budget Shows Leaping from Web to TV
The web series "Blue," starring Julia Stiles, is on the block this week at Mipcom, the world's largest TV content market, where the show's international rights are up for sale. If it's successful, "Blue" will join a growing number of web series making the jump to TV.

Facebook No Longer Friending Videos from YouTube
YouTube is losing a key platform as Facebook's home-grown videos become more popular, according to a report from Socialbakers. Facebook is poised to overtake YouTube in video posts in its news feed. "This is a big deal." YouTube "could lose a big percentage of their distribution."

Google Unwraps New Gadgets Ahead of Apple Event
Fast Company
Google has unveiled its latest Android "Lollipop" operating system and updated Nexus lineup, revealing a new phone, tablet and streaming-TV player. The timing was surely not accidental: It came the day before Apple is due to unveil new iPads at a hyped-up media event.

Apple Leaks Images of New iPads Before Big Unveiling
Apple's iTunes store made a bit of a slip-up screenshots for a user guide appeared that included the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. The company is due to formally unveil those devices on Thursday. Both tablets appear to be nearly identical to their predecessors in design.

Reddit Debuts Official Mobile App in Push for Business
New York Times
Reddit has never offered its own smartphone app. But that changed when the company announced it had bought Alien Blue, the most popular third-party app for iPhones and iPads used to browse the popular online message board, and will offer it for downloading.

Pinterest May Dwarf Twitter, Facebook as Ad Colossus
Pinterest isn't yet five years old, but among women it is already more popular than Twitter. Many analysts believe that it is only a matter of time before the visual social network blows past both Twitter and Facebook. "They're going to bring in billions of dollars a year."

Amazon Taps UK Newspaper Distributor for Deliveries
Wall Street Journal
Amazon owner Jeff Bezos may have bought the Washington Post. But his U.K. operation is looking at the newspaper industry from a different angle. The company is tapping into the distribution network of newspaper delivery firm Connect Group to launch a same-day pick-up service.

Yahoo Launches Digital Home-Improvement Magazine
Yahoo is continuing its digital push with its new DIY digital magazine. Editor in chief Katie Brown announced the new offering that aims to inspire home-improvement enthusiasts. DIY is Yahoo's eighth such magazine. Food, tech and style are among those that have their own spaces.

Netflix Pushing Hollywood to Rethink Movie Releases
Netflix wants to close the gap between the theatrical debut of movies and their availability for online streaming, forcing Hollywood to rethink where to release new films. Top directors are weighing the pros and cons: "The screens we watch on are becoming handheld. It's the future."

YouTube Star to Join Broadway Musical 'Rock of Ages'
Associated Press
The next big Broadway star is coming from the Internet. "Rock of Ages" has asked YouTube sensation Chester See to play rock idol Stacee Jaxx in the New York production. The new media star will start onstage at the Helen Hayes Theater on Oct. 27 and will play through Jan. 4.

Google's Shopping Delivery Service Adds Three Cities
Google plans to expand its same-day shopping delivery service to Boston, Chicago and Washington D.C., and will start charging $10 a month. The Google Express service, which competes with Amazon, was earlier only available in certain parts of California and New York City.

Yahoo Hires Washington Post Veteran to Run Ad Sales
Wall Street Journal
Yahoo has hired Kevin Gentzel, formerly chief revenue officer at the Washington Post, as its new head of advertising sales. At the Post, Gentzel oversaw the rollout of the company's native advertising products, BrandConnect and BrandStudio. He also spent 13 years at Forbes.

Facebook's Zuckerberg Stirs Talk from Samsung Visit
Wall Street Journal
What is Mark Zuckerberg doing in South Korea? The Facebook founder and some of his top lieutenants touched down yesterday for a series of meetings at Samsung's offices in Seoul and Suwon. The trip has triggered a flurry of speculation about what Zuckerberg may be up to.

Apple, Facebook Offer to Pay Women to Freeze Eggs
USA Today
Silicon Valley is known for its incredible job perks, but new moves by Apple and Facebook could help attract more female employees. Facebook said it will offer egg freezing for female staffers up to $20,000. Apple also offers egg freezing and storage. "We want to empower women."

Google Chief Says Amazon Is Biggest Search Rival
Financial Times
Eric Schmidt said that Google's biggest rival in search is Amazon, in a speech in Berlin that confronted critics of the U.S. group's market power by stressing it was just one of many "windows on to the web." Internet users are likely to go directly to Amazon if they are shopping, he said.

Netflix's Sarandos Talks 'Antiquated' Model for Movies
Hollywood Reporter
Netflix content chief Ted Sarandos gave industry execs at MIPCOM a peak into the company's plans to shake up the movie business. Speaking about the impact his company has had on traditional TV, Sarandos predicted that broadcasters would soon release full seasons of their shows.

Aereo Seeks to Change Definition of Video Distributor
Aereo has asked the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to change the definition of a provider of video services to help the startup find a way to resume operations. "Should the FCC move on this issue, it would be a meaningful step forward for competition in the video marketplace."

AOL's Huffington Post in Alliance with Leo Burnett
Crain's Chicago
The rise of content marketing and native advertising occasionally makes for strange bedfellows, as in a new alliance between Leo Burnett and the Huffington Post. Under the agreement, HuffPost Partner Studio will work with Leo Burnett to produce content for the ad agency's clients.

Amazon Offers Sale of Healthier Pepsi Cola Beverage
Daily News
Pepsi has launched a new mid-calorie soda, in an effort to win back customers looking to avoid artificial sweeteners. The new Pepsi True is currently available only on Amazon, but the company plans to roll it out to other online retailers, then certain grocery stores next year.

Yahoo Execs, Editors Fight Over Site's Use of Purple
Daily News
Yahoo's plan to reinvent itself as a media company has been mired in internal bickering. Two of the site's big-name editors, makeup guru Bobbi Brown and fashion personality Joe Zee, are fighting with top execs over use of the color purple. "They think it's really uncool and dorky."

MSN in Content Deal with Digital Network 120 Sports
Chicago Business
Four months after its launch, 120 Sports has expanded its profile. The Chicago-based live-streaming digital sports network has entered a deal to provide content to the MSN portal. Visitors to MSN will have access to 120 Sports' on-demand, real-time video content.

Snapchat Pictures, Videos Said to Be Leaked Online
Videos and pictures of as many as 200,000 teenagers posted via the Snapchat app and stored on a third-party website called are said to have been put online, apparently by the same people who were behind the posting of hacked celebrity photos in August.

Yelp Review Site Battles Extortion Claims in Lawsuits
Associated Press
Businesses for years have complained that Yelp was extorting them by raising or dropping ratings depending on whether they advertised with the Internet's most popular review website. Yelp is battling two lawsuits filed by company investors who have made their own extortion claims.

Reddit General Manager Exits Amid Site Turning Point
Erik Martin, general manager of Reddit, has stepped down, leaving the company without a veteran employee during an important period for the website. Reddit raised $50 million recently amid widespread criticism for its part in the dissemination of leaked celebrity pictures.

Google May Become World's First $1 Trillion Company
New York Post
Google will beat Apple to become the first member of the $1 trillion club, according to a report by BGC Capital analyst Colin Gillis. The Internet search giant is positioned for tremendous growth thanks to its investments in areas like self-driving cars and robotics, he said.

YouTube Payments to Media Partners Reach $1 Billion
Financial Times
YouTube has hit $1 billion in payments to companies that participate in a program that sells advertising on clips that could infringe copyrights, in a sign that media partners increasingly see the video site as a friend rather than a foe. Most "choose to monetize than block the videos."

Vice Media Leads New York's Billion-Dollar Startups
Crain's New York
Most billion-dollar startups have been based in California. But New York City has grown its membership in the club from basically zero five years ago to a good half-dozen now. New York firms with newsworthy valuations include Vice Media ($2.5 billion) and BuzzFeed ($850 million).

LinkedIn: Could It Be Adland's Next $1 Billion Player?
Advertising Age
Whether promoting corporate values or turning top brass into thought leaders, there is no place quite like LinkedIn for content marketing. And the company has spent the last year reshaping its advertising business to tap into that zeal. "It has become [LinkedIn's] fastest growing business."

YouTube to Open Production Facilities in Manhattan
New York Times
YouTube plans to open a production studio in Manhattan, bringing the company in proximity to more traditional content creators, along with a huge new pool of talent. The studio will include a "brand lab," allowing brands to mingle and perhaps do business with video creators.

Netflix Begins Charging Extra for Content in Ultra HD
Netflix offers only a handful of titles in eye-popping Ultra HD including the first season of NBC's "The Blacklist" but to watch them, subscribers will have to pay for its most expensive service tier. New Netflix members who want Ultra HD must sign up for the "family" plan at $11.99 monthly.

Yahoo's Mayer Steering Company More Toward Media
USA Today
Michael Wolff: "Yahoo's operating revenue is from advertising, and yet at two major ad gatherings the Cannes Lions Festival in June and Advertising Week a few weeks ago Marissa Mayer's strange combination of terror and somnolence became the main gossip."

YouTube Stars Become Authors as Books Hit Stores
Wall Street Journal
A wave of titles written by YouTube personalities will hit shelves this month, as book publishers bet on the power of online media. Michelle Phan, who has more than 7 million subscribers for her YouTube channel offering makeup and style tips, is coming out with "Make Up."

WikiLeaks to Roll Out Branded Merchandise in India
Times of India
Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, is said to be launching apparel and accessories in India, in the hope that the country's newfound fervor for online shopping will catapult him into a brand icon. "India is one of the countries where awareness about WikiLeaks is the highest."

Medium Signs Up Obama to Join Blogging Platform
President Obama has joined Medium, the blogging platform Twitter co-founder Evan Williams launched a year ago. Obama published his first post, about "the new American economy," last week. "On Medium, you can expect to hear more from President Obama and his administration."

Twitter, French Bank Offer Money Transfers via Tweets
One of France's largest banks has teamed up with Twitter to allow its customers to transfer money via tweets. The move by Groupe BPCE coincides with Twitter's own push into the world of online payments, as the social network seeks new sources of revenue beyond advertising.

Google Starts Testing Video Chat Service with Doctors
Google has begun testing video chats with doctors when users conduct online searches for symptoms. The Internet giant is said to be covering the costs of chats during the trial phase. Users will likely pay for the virtual appointments if and when the service is launched.

Yahoo's Mayer Has Plan to Turn Tumblr Into YouTube
Business Insider
CEO Marissa Mayer and her team are said to have an expanded vision for what Tumblr could be for Yahoo. Execs believe the 2013 acquisition should become Yahoo's answer to YouTube. In this vision, Tumblr would become the exclusive distributor of videos from many YouTube stars.

YouTube Startup Firm Jukin Media Raises $1.2 Million
Los Angeles Times
Jukin Media acquires YouTube videos it finds online that have the potential to or are already going viral and then licenses them to websites and TV networks. The Culver City, Calif., startup has just raised $1.2 million from investors to develop more technology and original content.

Amazon to Open Its First Physical Store in Manhattan
Amazon plans to open its first-ever brick-and-mortar store. The outlet, set to open in time for the holiday-shopping season, will mark an experiment to connect with customers in the physical world. The space will be at 7 West 34th Street, across from the Empire State Building.

YouTube's AwesomenessTV Opens Los Angeles Shop
AwesomenessTV plans to open a physical store dubbed Scene@AwesomenessTV in time for the holidays. Located at 428 North Fairfax near Melrose in Los Angeles, the pop-up storefront will carry select merchandise from AwesomenessTV's creators for their teenage fans.

Netflix's Handler Aims to Shake Up Talk Show Genre
Los Angeles Times
Chelsea Handler intends to put new twists on the talk show genre with Netflix starting in 2016. The comedian said she plans to ditch the monologue and guest format. "I want to do really cool interviews and meet with regular people take a break from the celebrity nonsense."

Apple Under Pressure from Icahn to Start Making TVs
Advertising Age
Activist investor Carl Icahn says it is time for Apple to get into the business of making TVs. In an open letter to CEO Tim Cook, Icahn said there is "good reason to expect" Apple to introduce an UltraHD TV. "Televisions are a promising gateway into the home for Apple's ecosystem."

Report: More Youngsters Are Ditching TVs for Tablets
The number of children with TV sets in their bedrooms has fallen sharply, while record numbers of youngsters are using tablet computers at home, according to a study by U.K. broadcasting regulator Ofcom. One in three children has their own tablet, almost double the number last year.

Vice Media Says Making Money Off Mobile Still a Puzzle
New York Business
Vice Media is full of money, ambition and confidence. But it faces the same vexing challenge everybody else does: How do we make money off all these people on their mobile devices? "Mobile is the wild west," said CEO Shane Smith. "It's very difficult to monetize right now."

Twitter's Costolo Says ISIS Has Threatened Employees
New York Post
Twitter CEO Dick Costolo has revealed that he and his staff have received death threats from ISIS. The terrorist organization had been using Twitter to communicate news, and Costolo said that when Twitter found out about it, the company would regularly shut down the ISIS accounts.


Google, Yahoo Ads Tied to Searches Called Deceptive
Wall Street Journal
U.S. regulators last year told Google, Yahoo and Microsoft to more clearly highlight the ads in their search-engine results, to avoid deceiving consumers. In response, the three search engines have done little, making it difficult for users to distinguish ads from "natural" search results.

Publicis Buys Stake in Digital-Ad Firm Matomy Media
Publicis has acquired a 20% stake in digital-advertising technology company Matomy Media, in the latest indication of big ad agencies' growing interest in the technology behind the industry. Matomy provides technology to help advertisers maximize returns from online ads.

Apple, Google Named World's Most Valuable Brands
The Drum
Brand consultancy Interbrand has published its latest run through of the world's 100 brands, topped this year by Apple and Google. The two tech giants were valued at $118.9 billion and $107.43 billion, respectively. They bested the likes of Coca Cola, IBM and Microsoft.

Publicis Exec Says Live TV Top Draw for Advertisers
While advertisers have cut spending on TV spots this year, media companies have turned the spotlight on sports and other live programming to draw ad dollars, according to a top exec with Publicis. "The emphasis on sports and live programming is the highest I have ever seen it."

BuzzFeed, Mashable Execs Sound Off on Native Ads
New York Post
Native advertising is one of the biggest trends on Madison Avenue, but some believe it's time to retire the buzzword. "Native sounds deceptive," Mashable's Seth Rogin said during an Advertising Week panel. BuzzFeed's Andy Wiedlin agreed: "I'm with you on the jihad, Seth."

WPP's Sorrell: Google, Facebook Are Media Owners
WPP CEO Martin Sorrell: "Google and Facebook are media owners. They like to say they're technology companies but they're masquerading as technology companies. They're media owners. They have a platform that drives volume and traffic to their own media properties."

Study: Programmatic Ad Buying to Reach $21 Billion
Wall Street Journal
Automated ad buying, in which marketers use computerized systems to target users based on consumer data and Web-browsing histories, is expected to jump 52% this year to $21 billion globally, according to a study scheduled to be released by Interpublic Group's Magna Global.

Traditional Media to Lose More Ads, Forecaster Says
Global advertising spending is on a healthy expansion track, with much of it coming from the rapid consumer adoption of digital media, according to the new forecast from ZenithOptimedia. The big losers in terms of ad market share will be the major traditional media, including TV.

WPP Increases Investment in Ad Tech Firm AppNexus
Wall Street Journal
WPP has agreed to invest $25 million in AppNexus in a deal that will raise its stake in the ad tech company to nearly 15%. The deal highlights the ad holding company's support for "independent" solutions. "The only alternative to AppNexus is to align with Facebook or Google."

Procter & Gamble Cancels On-Field Promo with NFL
Associated Press
Procter & Gamble has canceled an on-field breast cancer awareness promotion it had planned with the National Football League. The consumer products maker is the latest major sponsor to show concern over the NFL's handling of domestic abuse charges against several players.

Report: Digital Ad Spending to Surpass TV by 2017
Digital advertising expenditures will surpass TV spending by 2017 and the phenomenon is already occurring in some of the world's largest ad markets. One-third of all ad expenditures are currently allocated to digital, according to Interpublic Group CEO Michael Roth.

Amazon Tops List of Google's US Search Advertisers
Advertising Age
Amazon spent $157.7 million on Google U.S. search ads in 2013, by far the most by any company. It may raise a few eyebrows to see Amazon atop the list. Over the past few years Amazon has ramped up its business of selling search and display ads on its own and others' sites.

Nielsen's Addition of Handhelds to Boost TV Ratings
New York Post
For the first time, the Nielsen ratings that are the lynchpin of the TV business will start counting viewers who watch shows via mobile apps on tablets, phones and other handheld devices. Folding in mobile viewing is expected to add hundreds of thousands of new viewers overnight.

The Economist: Surveillance Is New Biz Model for Ads
The Economist
Surveillance is the advertising industry's new business model, according to a special report on ads and technology in the new issue of The Economist. "As people spend ever more time online, thousands of firms are invisibly gathering intelligence about them, as our special report explains."


Time Warner CEO Delivers Counterpunch to Murdoch
After deflecting an $80 billion takeover bid from 21st Century Fox, Jeff Bewkes has struck a blow to the entire pay-TV business model. Freeing HBO from cable was the highlight of Time Warner's new growth plan. Rupert Murdoch and other media moguls may be on the defensive now.

CBS Launches Subscription Service for Digital Video
CBS News
CBS is taking big leap into the digital space, announcing the launch of CBS All Access, a new digital subscription video on demand and live streaming service that will offer thousands of episodes from the broadcaster's current TV lineup, previous seasons and classic shows.

Warner Bros, Turner Tighten Budgets for Programming
New York Post
Warner Bros. and Turner Broadcasting have detailed plans to tighten their budgets, as part of a Time Warner-wide effort to redirect more money into programming. Warner boss Kevin Tsujihara said the studio is reducing costs by $200 million. Turner has said it is axing 1,500 staffers.

Wal-Mart to Roll Out Digital Movie Service InstaWatch
Wal-Mart Stores is launching a new service for customers to access digital copies of movies they buy at its stores and website across all platforms. The world's largest retailer has rolled out a beta version of the service, InstaWatch, in collaboration with seven movie studios.

Disney Accelerator Program Invests in Tech Startups
Disney Accelerator, a mentorship and investment program for tech startups, has brought together 10 companies for 15 weeks to incubate their ideas. Each company chosen gets up to $120,000 investment from Disney and access to mentors and resources at the entertainment giant.

Sony Eyes Christian Bale to Play Apple's Steve Jobs
Hollywood Reporter
Two weeks after Leonardo DiCaprio broke off talks with Sony to play Steve Jobs, the studio has set its sights on Christian Bale. Sony is said to be in negotiations with the actor to play the late Apple co-founder in a film based on Walter Isaacson's book and adapted by Aaron Sorkin.

Fox's Murdoch Daughter Buys Luxury London Home
Evening Standard
Elisabeth Murdoch has paid 38.5 million for a luxury home in northwest London just days after it emerged that her marriage to PR guru Matthew Freud was over. The daughter of Rupert Murdoch snapped up the property last week. It is described as an "ambassadorial residence."

Viacom Names EVP of Marketing Strategy, Engagement
Viacom's newly-created position of EVP, marketing strategy and engagement will be filled by Ross Martin, the company announced. Martin was promoted to the role after serving as EVP of Scratch, Viacom Media Networks' creative consulting team. Martin "has done a brilliant job."

Time Warner's Bewkes Planning Synergies, Job Cuts
Wall Street Journal
CEO Jeff Bewkes will try to make the case to investors that Time Warner is better off independent, and that he can drive revenue growth by plowing savings from personnel cuts into content production. Significant cuts are in the works across Warner Bros., Turner Broadcasting and HBO.

Disney's Sweeney Bullish on Watch Apps, Linear TV
World Screen
In an interview at MIPCOM, Disney's Anne Sweeney discussed the importance of live events, social-media interactions with audiences and the company's Watch apps. She remains bullish on linear TV: "There are still certain types of viewing that people do on their TV sets."

Creative Artists Talent Agency in Stake Talks with TPG
New York Post
Private-equity firm TPG Capital is said to be negotiating for a controlling stake in powerhouse Hollywood talent agency Creative Artists Agency. The talks between CAA, the No. 2 agency in size behind WME/IMG, and David Bonderman's TPG are described as being in their late stages.

Warner Bros, Ratner Create Chinese Investment Fund
Los Angeles Times
Warner Bros. is partnering with filmmaker Brett Ratner and two Shanghai-based companies to create a fund that will invest in film, TV and live entertainment projects targeting Chinese audiences. The entity, called the Creative Fund, will be capitalized "in excess of $100 million."

Fox's Murdoch Talks Time Warner, Google, Hacking
Sydney Morning Herald
James Murdoch defended 21st Century Fox's decision to withdraw its bid for Time Warner and took a swipe at Google during a revealing on-stage interview at MIPCOM, the global TV conference, in Cannes. Murdoch said he went "through hell" during the phone-hacking scandal.

Viacom Research Finds TV Everywhere Is 'Additive'
While still nascent in terms of awareness and usage, TV Everywhere presents a significant opportunity for brands to grow and strengthen their relationships with fans, according to a study by Viacom. After live TV, TV Everywhere apps and sites "are a strong alternative."

Disney's Maker CEO Says TV's Future Is Short-Form
Hollywood Reporter
In a keynote address at MIPCOM, Maker Studios CEO Ynon Kreiz explained why Disney acquired his online network and why he thinks the future of TV is very, very short: "Of the top 100 video properties in America, the average duration of the video is less than four minutes."

Legendary Buys Poehler's 'Smart Girls' Video Network
Smart Girls at the Party, the video content company co-founded by "Parks and Rec" star Amy Poehler, has been acquired for an undisclosed amount by Legendary Entertainment. Smart Girls, which was created in 2008, brings in about 5 million monthly views to its YouTube channel.

Softbank Acquires Korean Movie, TV Site DramaFever
Softbank has acquired DramaFever, the web video site that specializes in Korean movies and TV shows. The New York-based site had been talking to potential buyers including IAC. DramaFever offers free ad-supported videos, as well as a $10-a-month subscription service.

Disney's Maker Studios to Create Programming for TV
Maker Studios, the online video network acquired by Disney in May, will produce its first TV programs, using its stars to create TV specials for the parent company. Maker's catalog "is primed for TV with hundreds of thousands of videos created around trends and themes."

Fox's 'Gone Girl' Fights Off 'Dracula' to Win Box Office
USA Today
Amid a flurry of new movie challengers, "Gone Girl" shone through to take the top spot at the box office for the second weekend in a row. The Fox drama fought off an early challenge from Universal's "Dracula Untold." "Gone Girl" "is thought-provoking and still has people buzzing."

Time Warner Needs to Show Why Firm Is Better Alone
Ten years ago, Disney successfully fended off a hostile bid from Comcast, making the case that it was better off as an independent company. Now, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes faces a similar moment of reckoning after rejecting a bid from Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox.

Comcast's Universal to Open Theme Park in Beijing
Universal Studios has entered an agreement to open a $3.3 billion theme park in Beijing, the culmination of a 13-year effort to enter China's fast-growing entertainment market. The Beijing Universal theme park will include attractions based on Western brands like Harry Potter.

Fox, Apollo Finalize Deal for TV-Production Venture
Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox and Apollo Global Management have finalized an agreement to create a TV-production venture, combining the makers of "The Biggest Loser" and "Big Brother." Elisabeth Murdoch will once again leave her father's company after the deal closes.

Disney's Iger Sees Opportunity in Digital Disruption
Los Angeles Times
Digital disruption doesn't scare Disney CEO Bob Iger. "We actually believe disruptions could create much more opportunity for us instead of the opposite," he said. New forms of distribution will give Disney a direct relationship with customers and "unlock great value" for the company.

Fox's Murdoch Stirs Chatter from Talk with Romney
A private conversation between 21st Century Fox chief Rupert Murdoch and Mitt Romney has fueled speculation that the former Massachusetts governor may make a third run for president. The tete-a-tete reportedly took place this week at a GOP fundraiser. It "got tongues a-wagging."

CBS' Moonves: We're Not Hunting for Acquisitions
World Screen
Les Moonves, CEO of CBS: "There is a lot of conversation about M&A. We have a great deal of discipline. We look at a lot of things. But we are reluctant to change the mix unless we see great opportunity. And, at the moment, there is nothing that we are dying to have."

Viacom, CBS Chiefs Top List of Highest Paid in Media
Poor Rupert Murdoch. Before last week's disclosure of his new salary, he was making only a measly $28.9 million not even enough to crack the top 10 list of the highest-paid execs in entertainment. But now that he has split his empire, Murdoch is collecting two different salaries.

Time Warner Job Cuts Seen as Sign of Things to Come
The Information
This week's job cuts at Time Warner's Turner cable networks division raises the question of whether digital competition is beginning to have the same impact on TV as it has had on print. The short answer, most likely, is not yet. Still, the cuts are a harbinger of things to come eventually.

21st Century Fox: Murdoch's Daughter at a Crossroads
Hollywood Reporter
Elisabeth Murdoch, daughter of 21st Century Fox chief Rupert Murdoch, lost her job at her family's company Sept. 30 and is losing her husband both of which fit nicely into her father's campaign to settle scores, ensure his legacy and do a little business at the same time.

Discovery's Zaslav Says Eurosport Is a Terrific Asset
Discovery CEO David Zaslav: "ESPN is a great company. But Eurosport, for us, is a terrific asset. We reach more homes in Europe than ESPN does here in the U.S. It gives us great content. For us, Eurosport is the cherry on top of a great international business. That's our secret sauce."

Scripps Networks CEO Feels the Heat at Media Roast
New York Post
Ken Lowe, the head honcho of Scripps Networks Interactive, was the subject of some saucy jokes at the Center for Communication's annual award luncheon. Showtime CEO Matt Blank compared the CEO behind the Food Network to Will Ferrell's "Anchor Man" character Ron Burgundy.

Hearst: We Benefit from Investing in Vice, BuzzFeed
World Screen
Steve Swartz, CEO of Hearst, has admitted that the media business is getting "tougher," due to disruption from new technology. However, his company benefits from its stakes in upstarts like Vice Media, BuzzFeed and Roku. "We find that our venture arm is a good way to learn."

Time Warner CEO Says He Would Like to Buy Netflix
Despite talk of the benefits of spinning off properties, Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes has conceded there is one company he wouldn't mind acquiring Netflix. "Since it's worth what, 20 or 30 billion dollars, yeah, I wish I owned it personally." He added: "We do own a Netflix, we own HBO."




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