Morning Media Newsfeed: Jansing Promoted | CBS Crew Detained | News Corp. Buys Harlequin

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Chris Jansing Named Senior White House Correspondent for NBC News (TVNewser)
Changes are coming to NBC’s Washington bureau. NBC News president Deborah Turness has named Chris Jansing as the new senior white house correspondent and Peter Alexander as national correspondent. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Jansing, who will report primarily for NBC Nightly News, will relocate from New York to Washington and will stop hosting her MSNBC show Jansing & Co. The network said her replacement will be announced in the coming weeks. Variety Both Jansing and Alexander will work as part of a unit that also comprises Chuck Todd, the NBC News political director and chief White House correspondent, and Kristen Welker, who will continue to report for NBC Nightly News and Today. HuffPost It will be the latest of a string of changes at that network, which has recently reshuffled its daytime lineup and added Ronan Farrow and Joy Reid to its roster. Deadline Hollywood Jansing joined NBC News in June 1998, and has also anchored Jansing & Co. on MSNBC since October 2010. She anchored MSNBC’s coverage of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 as the events unfolded, extensively covered several presidential campaigns for both NBC News and MSNBC and hosted a series of reports called Battleground America.

Clarissa Ward, Crew Detained in Ukraine (TVNewser)
CBS News correspondent Clarissa Ward, her producer Erin Lyall, and two other CBS News employees were held for several hours Friday morning by pro-Russian militants. They were stopped at a checkpoint near the eastern city of Horlivka, detained and driven to another location about an hour away. HuffPost Ward and her news crew, along with BuzzFeed’s Mike Giglio and reporters from Sky News, were held, blindfolded and interrogated for hours as they attempted was traveling to Slavyansk, a city that Ukrainian troops are trying to retake from pro-Russian groups. The militants then separated the men and women and interrogated everyone. Ward said she overheard some of her captors discussing whether to hold the journalists so they could use them as bargaining chips in hostage negotiations. Poynter / MediaWire Both Ward and Giglio were released with all members of their parties, and both reported some violence: Ward said a CBS crewmember was beaten, and Giglio said one journalist got punched twice. (He also said his captors asked him to prove he’s American by saying the word “garden.”) NBC News The detentions come after Vice reporter Simon Ostrovsky was detained for four days at the end of last month. Ostrovsky said he was kept in a cellar of the occupied state security building along with a dozen other detainees.

News Corp. to Buy Romance Novel Publisher Harlequin (FishbowlNY)
News Corp. is buying Harlequin, the romance novel publisher owned by Torstar Corporation. News Corp. will then place Harlequin under the HarperCollins umbrella. The deal is expected to be for about $415 million in cash. GalleyCat The deal will help HarperCollins goal to expand into more foreign markets. Harlequin has titles in 34 languages and sells in more than 100 international markets. Harlequin earns about 40 percent of its revenues from non-English books, whereas 99 percent of HarperCollins books are published in English. NYT Founded more than 65 years ago, Harlequin still publishes some 110 books every month. Twenty-four of the 100 best-selling fiction books in North America for the last week in April were from Harlequin, according to the data-tracking system Bookscan. WSJ Harlequin has built a business selling its digital titles directly to consumers, including through subscriptions, according to Lorraine Shanley, president of industry consultants Market Partners International Inc. Most publishers still rely on retailers to sell their books. “HarperCollins can learn from that and apply it to other genres, such as science fiction and mysteries,” said Shanley.

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Veteran Journalists to Start Politics Site for Bloomberg (NYT)
John Heilemann and Mark Halperin, political journalists known for their detailed, gossip-filled books on the past two presidential campaigns, will join Bloomberg in the coming days to start a new site that will focus on American politics and policy. FishbowlNY New York magazine correspondent Heilemann and Time editor-at-large Halperin have been hired to shepherd the inaugural vertical. Heilemann and Halperin, authors of political campaign chronicles Game Change and Double Down, will as part of their Bloomberg Politics duties co-anchor a daily TV show. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Their contracts that will keep them with Bloomberg through the 2016 presidential election. The moves, which are to be announced this week, reflect Bloomberg’s growing desire to be seen as a serious player during the next presidential election cycle. Bloomberg has been courting the two authors since as early as March.

Josh Elliott Makes NBC Debut, With Former ABC Colleague (TVNewser)
Former Good Morning America hosts Josh Elliott and Sam Champion were back together again Friday morning on The Weather Channel. Around 9:10 a.m. ET Elliott turned up on Champion’s show AMHQ. THR / The Live Feed Friday marked Elliott’s first day of live TV coverage as part of NBC Sports, which he decamped for last month. Elliott anchored NBC Sports’ coverage of the Kentucky Oaks, the companion filly race to the Kentucky Derby, and participated in the network’s coverage of the Kentucky Derby. Elliott left GMA just last month after an intense negotiation with ABC News. When ABC did not meet Elliott’s asking price, he left and joined NBC Sports where he will cover Sunday Night Football, the Olympics and the Triple Crown. Champion, who announced his departure from ABC News in December, recently launched his new morning program with The Weather Channel.

Fast Company Named Magazine of The Year (FishbowlNY)
Staffers at Fast Company, rejoice: You work at the Magazine of The Year. That’s according to the ASME’s National Magazine Awards, which are basically the Oscars for the magazine world. NYT Fast Company, the magazine about business, technology and design, won the coveted title for its print and digital coverage. Fast Company was also cited for producing inspirational conferences and events that helped to create “a powerful media brand.” Capital New York Following last year’s surprising shut-out, The New Yorker nabbed four Ellies, more than any other publication. Each of them was in a text-based category, such as feature writing, which the august weekly won for Patrick Radden Keefe’s exhaustive exploration of a neurobiologist turned mass shooter, and commentary, which went to three of Emily Nussbaum’s essays on television.

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Vice to Launch Digital Sports Channel, Highlights 4 New Original Shows (Variety)
Vice, the hipster digital media company and studio aimed at Gen Y audiences, is set to launch a sports channel this summer — promising a journalistic deep-dive into drama on and off the field — and called out four new series it has in the works. HBO has renewed the Vice newsmagazine show for a third season. Vice also announced it has renewed Fresh Off The Boat, a global travel and food show hosted by New York restaurateur Eddie Huang. Three other new shows were announced, focusing on topics such as the environment and technology. THR Vice will launch a sports channel that is set to debut in June with premium video devoted to telling stories outside of the arena and looking at great sports moments. Vice World of Sports, one of the first series on the channel, will explore the culture of sports around the world.

Center for Public Integrity Names Top Editor, Deputy Executive Editor (FishbowlDC)
Executive director of the Center for Public Integrity William E. Buzenberg announced Friday that Gordon Witkin has been named the org’s top editor and John Dunbar its deputy executive editor. Poynter / MediaWire Witkin has been serving as the center’s top editor in an acting capacity. He also manages the center’s coverage of health care and juvenile justice and its state integrity project.

ESPN Will Live-Stream All 64 Matches of 2014 World Cup (Variety)
ESPN is storming the digital field for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil this summer, with a playbook that includes live-streaming all 64 matches of the soccer tourney to most U.S. pay-TV subs across multiple devices. During the World Cup, to run from June 12 to July 13, live coverage of every game from ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and ABC will be available via the WatchESPN and ESPN3 authentication services on computers, smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles and connected-TV devices. Deadline Hollywood The sports giant will dedicate an entire month of 24/7 news, analysis and such on ESPN3 and WatchESPN in the U.S. and worldwide via its multi-language soccer brand ESPN FC. The network also will launch a dedicated app and a redesigned global website this month.

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WSJ Unveils Digital Video Portal, Called Signal (Capital New York)
The Wall Street Journal unveiled plans for a “digital video magazine,” called Signal, at its presentation for the Digital Content Newfronts on Friday morning. The platform will feature original video content created by the Journal’s global news staff. It will also offer exclusive excerpts from established and upcoming filmmakers’ work. The new channel was presented as a means to give filmmakers an alternate route to the film festival circuit in their search for an audience and perhaps a distributor.

Many Consider Media Freedom on The Decline (FishbowlNY)
According to a new Gallup poll, more people claim that the media freedom in their respective countries is on the decline. The survey asked 1,000 people each in 132 countries across the globe “Do The Media in This Country Have A Lot of Freedom, or Not?” A median of 63 percent said “yes,” the lowest that number has been since 2010.

President Obama at Correspondents Dinner: Digs at Fox News, CNN, MSNBC (Variety)
President Obama’s poll numbers may be down to record lows. But once again, he showed he can still score on delivery in his monologue at the White House Correspondents Assn. Dinner. He riffed on cable news, as he has in the past. On CNN: “I am a little jet-lagged from my trip to Malaysia. The lengths we have to go to get CNN coverage these days.” On MSNBC: “MSNBC is here. I think they’re a little overwhelmed. They’ve never seen an audience this big before.” And of Fox News, he quipped, “Let’s face it, Fox. You’ll miss me when I am gone. It will be harder to convince the American people that Hillary was born in Kenya.” TVNewser Later, Community star and The Soup host Joel McHale, the entertainment for the night, got in a few one-liners about cable news as well: On MSNBC: “I am a big fan of that lesbian on MSNBC, Chris Hayes, he’s great. MSNBC is a confusing place. Al Sharpton is their skinny guy.” On CNN: “CNN is desperately searching for something they have been missing for months — their dignity. At this point, CNN is like the Radio Shack in a sad strip mall. You don’t know how it stayed in business so long, you don’t know anyone that shops there and they just fired Piers Morgan.” And on Fox: “Fox News is the highest rated network on cable news. It’s all thanks to their key demographic, the corpses of old people who tuned in to Fox News and haven’t yet been discovered.”

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Comcast Nears Deal to Stream EA Games to TVs: Sources (Reuters)
Comcast Corp. may soon allow customers using its cloud-connected X1 cable box system to buy games from Electronic Arts Inc. through their televisions, according to five sources briefed on the plans. Such a partnership would come as the cable company seeks to protect its turf against a new wave of challengers. After two years of testing, the companies are close to reaching an agreement to stream video games such as FIFA and Madden into the living rooms of some of Comcast’s more than 22 million customers across the United States.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Lands Second Opinion Column (FishbowlNY)
On the heels of joining the Los Angeles Register as a Wednesday columnist, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has been afforded some similar, bi-monthly real estate with Time. Abdul-Jabbar will appear online, in print and in a regular video series.

What Retirement? Barbara Walters Nabs Exclusive With Donald Sterling Girlfriend (Variety)
She may be two weeks away from retirement, but Barbara Walters is still working the phones. Walters nabbed the first TV sit-down interview with V. Stiviano, the woman at the center of the racism controversy that has surrounded businessman and L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling. The interview aired Friday on ABC newsmagazine 20/20. TVNewser “We met with [Sterling and Stiviano] today, and both agreed to speak to me,” Walters explained on 20/20 Friday night. “I went back and forth and back and forth. Finally, Donald decided not to be interviewed, but his companion did speak to me.” The interview came together so late in the day that it didn’t get the massive promotion these kinds of “gets” normally receive.

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