Howard Kurtz Under Fire For Erroneous Report About NBA Player Jason Collins Coming Out (Mediaite)
Arguably the biggest news this week has been basketball player Jason Collins coming out as the first openly gay player in major U.S. sports, but media critic Howard Kurtz thinks Collins has been quiet about one part of his past: his engagement to a woman after dating her for eight years. Kurtz stated quite clearly in a Daily Beast post Wednesday that Collins “left out” this detail about his life, but it turns out that was not exactly the case. Gawker On Wednesday Kurtz found — for two different outlets — a dark shadow in the sunny coverage of NBA player Jason Collins’ decision to come out as gay: Collins was at one point engaged to a woman. “He didn’t tell the whole story,” Kurtz burbles in a Daily Download video. Kurtz continues: “If you leave out the fact that you dated this woman for eight years and that you were engaged to be married, then you have not told the whole story and I think this really muddies the whole plotline.” Kurtz wrote the same argument for the Daily Beast, that Collins “left one little part out.” Except Collins didn’t leave the detail out. It’s right at the beginning of the eighth paragraph of his long Sports Illustrated piece. NY Mag / Daily Intelligencer Alerted to this glaring oversight, Kurtz quickly tweaked the text of his column to make it factually accurate. “He left one little part” was changed to “he downplayed one detail.” “Turns out it was an edited story” became “He mentioned the engagement to Sports Illustrated, but didn’t dwell on it.” A correction was belatedly affixed to the story long after the changes had been made. BuzzFeed Kurtz: “I regret the mistake I made in writing about Jason Collins’ essay, and I hope I wasn’t insensitive in discussing it. He did a courageous thing by taking this step, but once he put it out for public discussion, it seems fair to raise questions about the account of his former fiancee, who granted several interviews. Obviously Collins or any other gay person can come out in any way they choose, or not come out at all. I don’t think my analysis was out of bounds, but that’s for others to judge.” HuffPost / The Backstory Kurtz has been regularly contributing to, and heavily promoting, a lesser-known media website with no financial ties to his full-time employer. The site, Daily Download, is a regular fixture in Kurtz’s Twitter feed and a place where he increasingly posts his takes on the state of media affairs. But no one is sure why, exactly, he’s so involved with this particular piece of Internet real estate.
Time Inc. Keeps Shrinking (AllThingsD)
Overall revenue for Time Inc. was down 5 percent, to $737 million. Subscription revenue was down 11 percent, and the main reason advertising revenue was up 2 percent was because Time Inc. now has control of Golf.com and Sports Illustrated‘s website, which used to be run by Time Warner’s cable networks. And the additional money Time Inc. makes from those sites is basically wiped out by the absence of licensing fees they used to charge the cable guys for those sites. FishbowlNY Just in case everyone needed a reminder as to why Time Warner wants to ditch Time Inc.: The company’s earnings statement will jog your memory. While Time Warner raked in revenue of $6.94 billion for 2013’s first quarter, it would’ve been much better if not for Time Inc., which reported a 5 percent drop in overall revenue. NYT Time Inc. eliminated roughly 6 percent of its total worldwide staff of 8,000 in the first quarter, resulting in $53 million in restructuring and severance charges. “We remain very focused on taking costs out of the business,” said John K. Martin, chief financial and administrative officer at Time Warner.
Good Morning America, Today, CBS Sunday Morning Secure Daytime Emmy Nominations (TVNewser)
The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences has announced the nominees for the 40th annual Daytime Emmy Awards, and TV news shows and personalities are well-represented. The awards will air on HLN June 16. NYT Kevin Clash, who resigned from Sesame Street last year amid allegations that he had sexual relationships with minors, found himself back in the news on Wednesday after receiving a daytime entertainment Emmy nomination for his role as the show’s popular Elmo character. THR The Young and the Restless nabs 23 noms, General Hospital earns 19 and Sesame Street ties Days of Our Lives with 17 each. CBS has earned 50 Daytime Emmy nominations, followed by PBS (44), ABC (38), Nickelodeon (36) and NBC (25).
Obama Nominates Former Lobbyist Tom Wheeler As FCC Chairman (Mashable)
President Barack Obama nominated current venture capitalist and former wireless and cable industry lobbyist Tom Wheeler to head the Federal Communications Commission. Obama announced Wheeler’s nomination at the White House Wednesday afternoon, praising his knowledge of telecommunications policy. TVNewser Assuming he is approved by the Senate, Wheeler will replace outgoing FCC chair Julius Genachowski. FCC commissioner Mignon Clyburn has stepped in as the interim chair. TVSpy Wheeler has served as president of the National Cable Television Association and the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association.
NYT Names Carolyn Ryan Political Editor (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
Big news out of The New York Times Wednesday afternoon: Metro editor Carolyn Ryan has been promoted to political editor, where she will lead the paper’s political coverage. “No one needs a tuning fork to know that Carolyn has perfect political pitch and that no one’s passion for the political story surpasses hers,” Times executive editor Jill Abramson and managing editor Dean Baquet wrote in a memo to staff. FishbowlNY Ryan was most recently the paper’s metro editor. Wendell Jamieson, most recently deputy metro editor, will succeed Ryan as metro editor.
The Best Magazine Cover of 2012 Required Only A Helicopter And A Hurricane (Complex / Art + Design)
Every year around late April/early May, the magazine world goes bananas for the annual National Magazine Awards handed out by the American Society of Magazine Editors, informally called Ellies. One of the most coveted among those awards is the one that goes to Best Magazine Cover, and to be fair, it’s usually pretty reliable for rightfully awarding the kind of thing that makes you double-take at the newsstand. This year’s award is no different, as it was just handed today to New York Magazine for the cover of their post-Hurricane Sandy feature, “The City and The Storm.” FishbowlNY The stunning photograph for New York’s Nov. 12, 2012 issue was taken by Iwan Baan. He took the picture while hovering above the city in a helicopter.
LA Times Updates Guidelines For Covering Immigration (LA Times / Readers’ Rep)
The Los Angeles Times has announced new guidelines for covering immigration. The goal is to “provide relevance and context and to avoid labels.” That means stories will no longer refer to individuals as “illegal immigrants” or “undocumented immigrants,” but instead will describe a person’s circumstances.
Twitter Wants to Get More Journalists on Twitter (NY Observer)
Although many journalists are on Twitter and use the social network on an almost obsessive basis, they want to take it official. To use the parlance of another social network, they want to go from “It’s Complicated” to “In a Relationship.” And how better to do that than to create a position? Today, Twitter posted a link to a new job description: “Head of News and Journalism.”
Viacom Begins Turning The Corner on Ad Slump (Reuters)
Viacom Inc reported a 6 percent drop in revenue because of a weak slate of movies from its studio Paramount Pictures, but advertising revenue turned positive during the quarter.
Father of NY Post ‘Bag Men’ Hiring Lawyer (FishbowlNY)
When the New York Post idiotically plastered a photograph of El Houssein Barhoum’s son on its cover, labeling him and another man as “Bag Men,” Barhoum was outraged. His anger was understandable, because his son was being threatened and treated like the Boston Marathon bomber, all because of the Post’s reckless speculation. Now Barhoum has had enough. He is hiring a lawyer.
Research Site Declares April 15, 2013 Twitter’s ‘Saddest Day’ (Poynter / MediaWire)
Twitter is not just useful for posting erroneous breaking news updates; it’s also useful for measuring the world’s mood, as long as you write in English and use certain words that can be counted. In that vein, a new website has produced metrics that state April 15, 2013, the day of the Boston Marathon bombings, was the saddest day on the microblogging site in the last five years.
The Atlantic Launches A New eBbook Division; Will Sell Singles And Curated Collections (paidContent)
The Atlantic is launching an eBooks division that will publish e-singles and curated collections of content from the magazine’s archives. The first e-single is only available through Amazon’s Kindle Singles store for now, though it will soon be available at other retailers.
Every Page Is Your Homepage: Reuters, Untied to Print Metaphor, Builds A Modern River of News (Nieman Journalism Lab)
Reuters, as a wire service, has the concept of a minute-by-minute stream of news deep in its DNA. So it’s natural that its digital presence would echo that — a flowing river of information, where moving from story to story feels unencumbered.
Where Did All The Search Traffic Go? (BuzzFeed)
Search traffic to publishers has taken a dive in the last eight months, with traffic from Google dropping more than 30 percent from August 2012 through March 2013, according to research done by BuzzFeed. While Google makes up the bulk of search traffic to publishers, traffic from all search engines has dropped by 20 percent in the same period.
Rap Genius Is Getting Into Breaking News Analysis With News Genius (TechCrunch)
The founders of lyric website Rap Genius revealed Wednesday that they’re starting to move into annotating news content too, under the name News Genius.