Edward Menicheschi Named CMO of Condé Nast (FishbowlNY)
Edward Menicheschi has been named chief marketing officer and president of Condé Nast. Menicheschi most recently served as Vanity Fair’s VP and publisher. New York Post Menicheschi will replace Lou Cona, who is getting the boot. Some were speculating that Gina Sanders, the president of Condé’s Fairchild division, might land the vacant Vanity Fair job now that her group is being sold to Penske Media Corp. Capital New York Cona has served as the media group’s president and chief revenue officer since April 2013. As home to the publisher’s corporate and digital sales and marketing teams, the division is a central corridor of business-side power. Cona first ascended the corporate ladder to the media group in 2010 after his own stint as Vanity Fair’s vice president and publisher, and a run at The New Yorker before that. WWD Cona’s departure came as a surprise to some within Condé. In April 2013, he was promoted after he mused about retiring at the ripe age of 55. TheWrap Prior to Menicheschi’s role at Vanity Fair, he was president of WWD Media Worldwide. He has held a number of senior roles at Vogue and GQ.
David Gregory Writing Book on Jewish Faith (Politico / Playbook)
David Gregory is writing a book about his Jewish faith, for publication next year. TVNewser Gregory and publisher Simon & Schuster have reportedly been working on the book since 2011, which will focus on his “personal faith and the spiritual journey people take in their lives.” FishbowlDC The book will not serve as a memoir to Gregory’s six years as Meet the Press host or 20-year career with NBC News. Last Thursday, NBC News president Deborah Turness announced that Gregory would be replaced as host of the network Sunday morning public affairs program by Chuck Todd. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Gregory is well-known to host Jewish holidays at his home in Northwest D.C. and has studied with a Jewish scholar. And, as previously reported, Gregory will be available for speaking gigs this fall, including on what life is like in the middle of “the media firestorm.”
Fired Up Bill O’Reilly Helps Put Fox on Top (TVNewser)
After CNN’s back-to-back ratings wins Monday and Tuesday, Fox News Channel returned to its familiar perch atop the cable news ratings scoreboard. FNC drew the most total viewers and A25-54 demo viewers in both total day and primetime Wednesday. While FNC was up in both dayparts, CNN and MSNBC were both down from Monday and Tuesday. Deadline Hollywood The O’Reilly Factor was the night’s highest-rated cable news program with 615,000 news demo viewers, besting Anderson Cooper’s 346,000 on CNN, Chris Hayes’ 135,000 on MSNBC and Nancy Grace’s 186,000 on HLN. For the night, FNC averaged 540,000 demo viewers, beating CNN (362,000) and MSNBC (156,000) combined. THR / The Live Feed The regular ratings winner, FNC does see increased competition from CNN during times of breaking news. O’Reilly covered the events in Ferguson, Mo., from the network studio in New York, as did MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, while Cooper has fronted coverage for CNN in Ferguson. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media A new report from Pew finds that MSNBC devoted the most primetime cable coverage to the unrest in Ferguson in the week after Michael Brown’s death. MSNBC devoted twice as much airtime as Fox News to the events in Ferguson over the course of the first six days of the story, with CNN’s coverage in the middle. Pew found that the networks devoted similar levels of coverage in the aftermath of the death of Trayvon Martin in 2012.
Justice Dept. Opens Criminal Investigation Into James Foley Execution (TVNewser)
Attorney General Eric Holder announced Thursday the Department of Justice is taking action following the beheading of journalist James Foley. FishbowlDC “The Justice department is actively pursuing justice in this case,” said Holder. “We have an open criminal investigation. And those that would perpetrate such acts need to understand something. This Justice Department, this Department of Defense, this nation; we have long memories and our reach is very wide. We will not forget what happened and people will be held accountable, one way or the other.” Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Additionally, Rep. Buck McKeon, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, called for an investigation into a possible leak that prompted the administration to disclose that special forces tried to save Foley before he was killed by ISIL.
Sinclair Launches Original Programming Division (TVSpy)
Sinclair Broadcast Group is going to start producing original programming. The station group announced it’s launching the SOP, or Sinclair Original Programming division, which will create and develop entertainment content as well as infomercials and direct-response commercials. Poynter / MediaWire “Controlling our content and its development not only reduces our dependency on others, providing a hedge against network disruptions, but allows us greater economic upside potential,” Sinclair president and CEO David Smith said in a press release. TVNewsCheck Initially, shows will be developed for the company’s MNT and CW affiliates and will air in primetime and afternoon time periods on the weekend. The division will be led by Arthur Hasson, who is being named chief operating officer of SOP, reporting to Smith. Hasson will also continue as GM of Sinclair’s Harrisburg, Pa., CBS affiliate WHP, which also airs MNT programming on a subchannel, and CW affiliate WLYH.
Huffington Post Expands to India (FishbowlNY)
Here’s something that you only read about almost every day: The Huffington Post is expanding once again. HuffPost has partnered with The Times of India Group, the country’s biggest media company, to launch Huffington Post India. The site — which will feature content in English — is expected to launch later this year. Adweek The website will mark HuffPost’s 12th international edition and third foray into Asia. The online publication already has a large international presence, with its global desktop numbers reaching 86 million unique views, per comScore in June 2014. The company has previously claimed that almost half of its traffic comes from overseas. Interestingly, former managing editor Jimmy Soni — who many consider a Huffington protégé — will not be headed to India to guide the efforts. Capital New York A HuffPost spokeswoman said Soni has left the company to write a book for Simon & Schuster about the late Claude Shannon, known as “the father of information theory.” He will still be heading to New Delhi, where HuffPost India will be based, to consult on the launch, she said, though “there’s no plan for him to return to full-time.”
Saveur Editor-in-Chief James Oseland to Exit (Capital New York)
Saveur editor in chief James Oseland will leave the upscale food magazine, Bonnier chief content officer David Ritchie said in an internal statement Thursday. Oseland has been editor-in-chief of the food and lifestyle magazine since 2006, during which time Saveur has won eight James Beard journalism awards and multiple awards and nominations from the American Society of Magazine Editors. NYT Oseland is leaving his position to join the publisher Rodale. At Rodale, Oseland will start a new magazine brand, transforming the 62-year-old Organic Gardening magazine into Organic Life. The new magazine is expected to include coverage of “food, garden, home and well-being,” a Rodale spokeswoman said. It will be introduced next year with a March/April issue.
Instagram Rolling Out Advertising Tools (AllFacebook)
Instagram introduced advertising last November, and now the Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing network is rolling out tools for advertisers that will allow them to gauge the success of their campaigns. Inside Facebook Instagram announced these new tools on its blog: “The new tools will help brands monitor their posts and campaigns by providing information on reach, impressions, and engagement. For example, an advertiser will now have access to a real-time campaign summary and data showing how their target audience is responding to each of their sponsored photos. Also, brand marketers will be able to better understand the best time of day to post a photo or video.” Mashable The program is being rolled out to Instagram’s several dozen ad partners, including Levi’s, Hollister and Taco Bell. The Facebook-owned photo platform plans to release the program to all potential advertisers in the coming months.
Iran Frees Photojournalist (NYT)
An Iranian-American woman with dual citizenship, who had been working in Iran as a photojournalist officially accredited by the authorities, was released on Thursday after having been held at an unidentified location since July 22, her relatives said. They refused to reveal her identity. The photojournalist was arrested together with her husband, who was released earlier, on the same day that a reporter for The Washington Post, Jason Rezaian, and his wife, Yeganeh Salehi, were arrested by Iran’s powerful judiciary branch.
German Broadcaster Fires Chinese Blogger (NYT)
In the wake of a debate over the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, a well-known Chinese government critic has been fired from her job at a German public broadcaster. The activist, Su Yutong, 38, who has been exiled in Germany since 2010, was informed Tuesday that her contract with Deutsche Welle would not be renewed in 2015. In a statement on Wednesday, the broadcaster said the decision had been made because she disclosed information about internal meetings and publicly criticized a co-worker.
Afghanistan Defends Expulsion of a Times Reporter (NYT)
The Afghan government lashed out Thursday at criticism of its expulsion of an American journalist, the first such action since the ouster of the Taliban, denouncing him as a spy in an official statement. Both the American ambassador and the top United Nations representative here sharply criticized the expulsion of the journalist — Matthew Rosenberg, 40, a correspondent for The New York Times — who left Kabul on Thursday evening, within a 24-hour deadline imposed by the Afghan attorney general’s office.
AwesomenessTV Channel Launches on Roku (Variety)
AwesomenessTV, the youth-oriented video network owned by DreamWorks Animation, has rolled out an app on the Roku set-top and other devices — a move that will expand its YouTube multichannel network to a new platform. The AwesomenessTV app on Roku includes the MCN’s videos about beauty, advice for teens, daily celeb gossip, teen pop stars, performance sports, sketches and pranks, and other shows. DWA acquired AwesomenessTV last year in a deal worth up to $117 million.
Capstone Inks Distribution Deal With Scribd’s eBook Service (GalleyCat)
Children’s publisher Capstone Young Readers has signed a distribution agreement with eBook subscription service Scribd. The partnership brings 500 new children’s eBooks to the platform, expanding Scribd’s children’s selection significantly.
Time Battles Blow-Back from Ad-Based Employee Ratings (New York Post)
Time Inc. continues to try to put out a firestorm of controversy tied to new, “advertiser-friendly” criteria used to evaluate some of its editorial employees. One phrase in particular seemed to spark the controversy: how “beneficial to advertiser relationship” an editor/writer’s work was.
U.S. News Promotes Kim Castro as Executive Director of Consumer Advice (FishbowlDC)
U.S. News & World Report Thursday announced the promotion of managing editor for money and health Kim Castro to executive editor of consumer advice. Castro’s promotion was announced with the hire of Kim Heneghan as VP and GM of money products.