Daily Beast’s John Avlon Rallies Troops as Roughly 20 Colleagues Lose Their Jobs (Capital New York)
On the first day of its new life without Newsweek, Daily Beast executive editor John Avlon rallied the troops with an afternoon memo full of good news, like a 36-percent year-over-year traffic gain and a nomination to Adweek‘s annual “Hot List” poll. Roughly 20 employees across the editorial and business sides were let go Monday and Tuesday, a person with knowledge of the cuts told Capital. The layoffs were a direct result of Newsweek’s sale to IBT Media, which recently took the struggling title off parent company IAC’s hands for an undisclosed sum. Gawker Capital’s Joe Pompeo says that leaves TDB with a total headcount of about 65 employees. If you are one of them, you might consider browsing job listings when your workday has concluded. Though there are exceptions to every rule, the outlook at media companies that find themselves in this position typically does not brighten from here on out. NY Mag / Daily Intelligencer In an optimistic memo, the site’s executive editor reminded those remaining “that The Daily Beast is nominated for hottest news site by Adweek — so if you didn’t vote yet, please do.”
George Will Jumps From ABC to Fox News (TVNewser)
Political columnist and author George Will is joining Fox News as a contributor, executive vice president of news Michael Clemente announced Tuesday. Will jumps to Fox News after more than 30 years at ABC News, where he was a political commentator and panelist for This Week. NYT Will’s departure from ABC after such a long tenure was seen as something of a surprise but essentially came down to geography, according to ABC News spokesman Jeffrey Schneider. He pointed out that This Week, which in the past was based in Washington, Will’s home, now broadcasts three weeks out of four from New York. HuffPost Stephanopoulos provided a statement to HuffPost’s Michael Calderone: “As all his readers know, George is brilliant. Those of us lucky enough to work with him also know that he’s a consummate gentleman. I learned from him every week, and wish him all good things.”
The Washington Post Closes Sale to Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos (The Washington Post)
Amazon.com founder and chief executive Jeffrey P. Bezos formally took over as the owner of The Washington Post on Tuesday, officially ending 80 years of local control of the newspaper by the Graham family. Bezos’ $250 million purchase was completed as expected with the signing of sale documents. The signing transfers the newspaper and other assets from The Washington Post Co. to Nash Holdings, Bezos’ private investment company. HuffPost The Post reported that the sale documents that transferred ownership of the newspaper from the Graham family to the Amazon founder were signed. Publisher Katharine Weymouth announced the news to employees in a memo, writing, “We are officially under new ownership, and a new era for The Washington Post begins.”
The Top Story on Conservative Websites Is Not The Shutdown (New Republic)
On Tuesday, for the first time in 17 years, the U.S. government shut down indefinitely, causing more than 800,000 federal workers to be sent home (or to stay home, as the case may be) without pay, among other terrible things. It’s a pretty big deal! As such, it’s the lead story on the homepages of the nation’s leading, and not-so-leading, newspapers. “SHUTDOWN BEGINS,” shouts The Washington Post, in what must be 40-point font. But the shutdown barely registers on the nation’s top conservative websites. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media The website of Fox News has deemed the situation in Washington a “slimdown” and not a “shutdown.” Although “slimdown” hasn’t been used on air yet, it’s all over the Fox News homepage. An article on the site says that although the Obama administration is portraying what’s happening as a “shutdown” of the federal government, “it’s turning out to be more of a ‘slimdown,’ as all but non-essential workers reported to their jobs Tuesday.” Al Jazeera America / Dan Froomkin When the political leadership of this country is incapable of even keeping the government open, a political course correction is in order. But how can democracy self-correct if the public does not understand where the problem lies? And where will the pressure for change come from if journalists do not hold the responsible parties accountable? GalleyCat Really Big Coloring Books, the Missouri-based publisher behind the Tea Party Coloring Book and We Shall Never Forget 9/11, has released a comic-coloring book page for kids about the federal government shutdown.
Obama: iPhones Have Glitches Just Like Healthcare.gov Has Glitches (TechCrunch / CrunchGov)
President Obama compared Apple’s imperfect operating system launch to the massive glitches plaguing the new government health care price comparison websites. Responding to the government shutdown in a sunny Rose Garden press conference, Obama took time to address some of the reported website issues: “Consider that just a couple of weeks ago, Apple rolled out a new mobile operating system, and within days, they found a glitch, so they fixed it. I don’t remember anybody suggesting Apple should stop selling iPhones or iPads or threatening to shut down the company if they didn’t. That’s not how we do things in America.” TVNewser As for the opening day of Obamacare, the president told the stories of a few people who are already benefiting from it. One of them, standing behind the president (above in the NBC image) is our former marketing director, Amanda Barrett. She left her job at Mediabistro a couple years ago to return to Washington, D.C. to take care of her ailing parents. PRNewser In one of recent history’s most amazing coincidences, the day the federal government “shut down” happens to be the very same day that the statewide health insurance exchanges forming the core of the Affordable Care Act started up. The number of conflicting messages delivered by parties with diametrically opposed goals is enough to make you dizzy.
Twitter’s Jack Dorsey Tweets It Up With Iran’s President Rouhani (CNET)
Twitter was witness to a simple back-and-forth between the social network’s co-founder Jack Dorsey and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Tuesday. And, despite being a small exchange, it could be a signal of a change to come for Iran’s citizens. Dorsey first tweeted, “Good evening, President. Are citizens of Iran able to read your tweets?” And, in response, Rouhani said, “Evening, @Jack. As I told @camanpour, my efforts geared 2 ensure my ppl’ll comfortably b able 2 access all info globally as is their #right.”
Turner Orders Cable One to Pull TBS, TNT, Cartoon Network After It Drops CNN, TCM, Boomerang (Fierce Cable)
Turner Broadcasting Inc. said Tuesday that it told Cable One to remove TBS, TNT and Cartoon Network from its lineup, after it dropped several less popular networks owned by Turner. The Phoenix, Ariz.-based MSO announced Tuesday that it pulled the plug on CNN, HLN, Turner Classic Movies, TruTV, CNN en Espanol and Boomerang after Turner demanded a 50 percent increase in license fees. Cable One said that it had an agreement to continue offering subscribers TBS, TNT and Cartoon Network. But Turner officials said that Cable One, which is represented by the National Cable Television Cooperative, can’t use its NCTC affiliation to pick individual networks to offer subscribers. “Cable One does not have the right to distribute TBS, TNT and Cartoon Network through an NCTC agreement,” Turner spokeswoman Rachelle Savoia told FierceCable. TVNewser As a result of the dispute, more than 500,000 cable subscribers will be unable to get the channels, mostly in the South and the Midwest, where Cable One has most of its customers. The timing couldn’t be worse for CNN, which is covering the effects of the government shutdown. Subscribers will also be unable to watch the MLB wildcard and division series games, which start this week on TBS.
Northwestern’s Journalism Program Offers Students Internships With Prestige, But No Paycheck (ProPublica)
Northwestern University’s journalism school boasts of its prowess in preparing students for prestigious careers — but it also serves as a pipeline for unpaid internships. At Medill, students pay $15,040 in quarterly tuition for the privilege of working full-time jobs as unpaid interns. During their mandatory quarter in Journalism Residency, as it is known, students work full time at news organizations such as CNN Documentaries, Self and WGN Chicago. But instead of paying interns, employers pay Medill $1,250 for every student placed. In turn, students receive academic credit and a small stipend from the university for relocation expenses, ranging from $600 to $1,200. Gawker In other words: Medill is getting paid by both enrolled students and the cash-strapped media companies where they “intern,” and pocketing the difference between the placement fee and the students’ relocation expenses. Worse: Up until last year, Medill forbid students from working another job to supplement their sub-minimum-wage income. It’s as if Medill is deliberately trying to exclude from journalism careers anyone who isn’t already very rich.
Newspaper Editor Blames Decline of His Industry on Single Moms (Slate / The XX Factor)
Chris Powell, the managing editor of the local Connecticut newspaper the Journal-Inquirer, has an interesting theory as to why nobody wants to buy his newspaper anymore. It’s not the Internet’s fault, Powell wrote in an op-ed in his own newspaper this week. Single moms are to blame. Journal-Inquirer Powell: “Newspapers still can sell themselves to traditional households — two-parent families involved with their children, schools, churches, sports, civic groups, and such. But newspapers cannot sell themselves to households headed by single women who have several children by different fathers, survive on welfare stipends, can hardly speak or read English, move every few months to cheat their landlords, barely know what town they’re living in, and couldn’t afford a newspaper subscription even if they could read. And such households constitute a rising share of the population.” CJR / The Kicker Like many print journalists, Powell has many of his eggs in an increasingly marginalized basket, and that’s fine, if not the best business model. The print newspaper was a great way of delivering news and continues to hold onto a enough of a fanbase — and revenue, in the form of print ads and subscriptions — to remain in existence. Newspapers also hold a nostalgic charm, and they employ a decent number of people. What makes Powell a dinosaur (besides his bizarrely hostile attitude toward the poor) is his inability to recognize that journalism happens, too, outside the hallowed halls of the newspaper.
Hollywood Advancing Clinton Film (NYT)
Two television projects about Hillary Rodham Clinton collapsed under political pressure this week, but she may yet get her close-up on screen, this time from Hollywood. A third biographical portrayal of Clinton — this one a feature film focused on her years as a young lawyer during the Watergate era — has been quietly inching forward, and promising fresh dilemmas for both its subject and for those who are bent on making her a big-screen star.
Minneapolis Reporter Sorry for Drunken Tweet (TVSpy)
KMSP reporter Tom Lyden has apologized for a tweet he sent it out the night of the Upper Midwest Regional Emmy Awards. The tweet itself tells the story: “Some douche just asked me if I was nominated for an #emmy# told him I want to — his cat is that wrong #drunk filter:images” When TVSpy asked Lyden if he expected any more fallout from the tweet, he told us, “Gosh. I hope not.”
Florida University Disciplines Student Journalist Who Tried to Report on Suicide (Poynter / MediaWire)
Florida Atlantic University’s Office of Student Conduct is punishing Dylan Bouscher, the editor-in-chief of the student paper University Press, for reporting from the scene of a suicide on campus. FAU Police say Bouscher “failed to comply with multiple requests or orders of law enforcement officers and interfered with an active investigation and crime scene.” Bouscher “had been driving the newspaper’s golf cart near the site of a suicide on campus last month,” Samantha Sunne writes, “and had hung around trying to get information and photos for his story until an officer yelled at him to leave.”
The Inside Story of One Website’s Defense of Assad (BuzzFeed)
As Mnar Muhawesh prepared to publish a scoop from longtime Associated Press stringer Dale Gavlak, she dashed off an email to her staff with the typical glee of an editor with a huge story. “MintPress News, Associated Press and NPR correspondent Dale Gavlak, based in Amman, Jordan, who has been the Associated Press correspondent based in that region for over 25 years and still going, has broken a very important story in regards to the Syrian chemical weapons attack that occurred last week, and I wanted to give you the opportunity to be the first to hear,” Muhawesh, the 26-year-old editor of Mint Press News, wrote on Aug. 29 in an internal email obtained by BuzzFeed.
Have The Media Failed Us on Climate Change? (Mother Jones / Environment)
September should have been the biggest month for climate change journalism in six years. With the release of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment Report in Stockholm on Friday, there was a wealth of stories for journalists to pursue. Scientists are now more certain than ever that humans are causing global warming. Sea level rise projections have been increased — extremely bad news for coastal mega-cities. And researchers have given a stark warning about the irreversibility of much of global warming, and how it will literally play out over a millennium. But in recent weeks, we’ve seen a flood of media coverage advancing dubious claims pushed by global warming skeptics.
Dan Nosowitz Leaving Popular Science for Ken Lerer’s Animal-Themed Website (NY Observer)
Popular Science associate editor Dan Nosowitz is going to The Dodo, the animal-themed startup website backed by BuzzFeed chairman and Huffington Post co-founder Ken Lerer.
ErinRoseQ I photocopied a zany childhood essay and submitted it as my “writing sample.” Quick way to land a terrible job!
prekshatweets Hired myself during a trial day before anyone said I was offered the job. Oops! 3 years later, assistant becomes director.
Will Palaia Arrived 30 minutes late, no resume, and ill-fitted suit. Was hired immediately…