Fareed Zakaria to Join Atlantic Media as Contributing Editor (FishbowlDC)
Atlantic Media announced Monday that Fareed Zakaria will join The Atlantic and Quartz as a contributing editor in September. In this role, he will write for The Atlantic and participate in AtlanticLIVE and Quartz events. FishbowlNY Zakaria will continue his current roles as host for CNN and a columnist for The Washington Post. HuffPost “I have read The Atlantic with pleasure for three decades,” Zakaria said. “It is the best forum for ideas in the world and I’m delighted to be a part of it and Quartz.” Poynter / MediaWire Zakaria will cover “pressing world matters and culture”, and his work will appear both in the magazine and on TheAtlantic.com, according to Atlantic Media. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Zakaria’s first event with the company will be Quartz’s The Next Billion: A Connected World conference in New York in November.
The Hill’s Bob Cusack Named Editor-in-Chief (FishbowlDC)
The Hill announced Monday that Bob Cusack has been named editor-in-chief. He’s served as managing editor of the paper since 2004. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media He also served as the Hill’s business and lobbying editor. Cusack replaces Hugo Gurdon, who was named editorial director of The Washington Examiner on Monday. The Hill Cusack has won five awards from the National Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists for investigative articles on a range of issues, including national security, health care and presidential politics. Cusack regularly appears as a political analyst on networks such as Fox, CNN and MSNBC, among others. TheWrap In addition to Cusack’s new position, The Hill announced several other staffing changes. Current news editor Ian Swanson will move to managing editor to replace Cusack, and business and lobbying editor Dustin Weaver will assume the news editor position.
Time Warner Unmoved by Fox’s Board Seat Offer (Variety)
21st Century Fox is willing to give Time Warner shareholders representation on its board as part of a bid for the media giant. However, participation in the leadership of the tightly controlled conglomerate may not be enough to make much difference, according to an individual close to Time Warner. Deadline Hollywood Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes just won an indirect endorsement for his argument that his shareholders would be better off letting him lead the company instead of accepting a cash and stock offer from Rupert Murdoch. Without a deal, Time Warner shares should hit $95 within a year, and there’s “a credible stand-alone bull case valuation of $105,” Morgan Stanley Research’s Benjamin Swinburne said Monday. Bloomberg Bewkes is looking to the Internet to accelerate growth at his prized TV network, HBO, as he seeks to demonstrate to investors that Time Warner is worth more on its own than with Murdoch. HBO, home to Game of Thrones and Boardwalk Empire, may expand a $49-a-month trial introduced last year with Comcast Corp., people with knowledge of the plan said last week. The pilot, and a similar one from AT&T, offers Web access paired with HBO and limited basic TV. WSJ Bewkes must also fix the Turner Broadcasting unit, which houses TNT, TBS and CNN, and accounts for half the company’s profits. Fox’s $80 billion takeover offer was rejected by Time Warner earlier this month. People in the Fox camp argue that Fox could improve on Turner’s performance.
FCC Lacks Information It Needs to Judge TV Station Co-Op Agreements (Deadline Hollywood)
The Government Accountability Office dinged the FCC in a report released Monday for failing to collect enough information to judge TV station joint-operation deals. The FCC wants to tighten restrictions to keep stations from combining ad sales or newsgathering resources. The Hill Companies say the agreements, which broadcasters use to share news clips, team up for negotiations with cable and satellite companies and share resources for ad deals, are necessary to keep broadcasters afloat, especially in small and rural areas. Cable and satellite providers, however, claim that the deals can drive up costs, which leads to increases in subscribers’ monthly bills. Variety Additionally, a group of Los Angeles area congressional representatives called on the FCC Monday to mediate an impasse between Time Warner Cable and other multichannel providers that has left about 70 percent of the region’s viewers unable to get access to the cabler’s Dodgers channel.
Fox Sports Digital Partners With Sporting News Media (Adweek)
Fox Sports Digital and Sporting News Media are teaming up in a bid to take a bigger slice of the online audience. The two companies said Monday that they would partner under the name Fox Sports Digital-Sporting News Media to share both content and traffic, and are projected to reach an audience of 55 million fans monthly. Capital New York It will share traffic numbers and content across their three primary sites: FoxSports.com, SportingNews.com and Goal.com. Fox Sports, like NBC Sports and CBS Sports, has struggled to compete with ESPN in terms of its digital traffic numbers. The Sporting News, which was once a weekly magazine but discontinued its print publication in 2013, has been trying to carve out a digital niche, but upstarts like Turner’s Bleacher Report and Vox’s SB Nation have made it a challenge to stand out. Variety Fox Sports Digital will distribute FoxSports.com and Fox Sports 1 video content via the Sporting News ePlayer platform, extending the reach of Fox Sports Digital’s exclusive off-network video opportunities. The companies said they hope to capture more sports fans seeking to complement live game broadcasts with digital video across platforms and devices.
DreamWorks Animation Names Mark Zoradi as COO, Ann Daly Becomes President (Variety)
DreamWorks Animation has hired Mark Zoradi as COO of the company. Ann Daly will be promoted to president of the studio and Lew Coleman will also take on the vice chairman job, in addition to his roles as CFO and acting chief accounting officer. Deadline Hollywood The studio announced the changes one day ahead of its Q2 earnings — and after watching its shares lose 35.4 percent of their value since the beginning of the year. THR Zoradi most recently served as president of the Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Group, resigning that post in 2009 during Rich Ross’ brief tenure as chairman of Walt Disney Studios. Just last week his name surfaced as one of the potential candidates that Sony Pictures was considering to replace outgoing distribution and marketing chief Jeff Blake.
Roger Pielke Jr. Leaves FiveThirtyEight (Discover Magazine / Collide-a-Scape)
Earlier in the year, Roger Pielke Jr. was named as a contributing writer for Nate Silver’s newly re-launched FiveThirtyEight site. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Pielke, an environmental studies professor, has parted ways with the site after controversy over a piece he wrote on natural disasters. In March, Pielke wrote a piece for FiveThirtyEight claiming that climate change is not the cause behind the increasing cost of natural disaster. The article unleashed a torrent of criticism directed at both Pielke and the site, which had only just launched. Silver published a conditional defense of the article and a rebuttal.
BSkyB Increases Stake in Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Technology Firm Jaunt (THR)
BSkyB has increased its investment in Jaunt, a Silicon Valley startup whose technology adds virtual reality components to TV programming. The U.K. pay TV giant said Monday it has invested an additional $400,000 in the Palo Alto-based company after a December deal to pump $350,000 into it. Variety The technology being developed by Jaunt, which is led by Jens Christensen, Arthur van Hoff, Tom Annau and Scott Broock, allows users to explore the world in immersive 3D.
Jailed Al Jazeera Journalists Denied Presidential Pardon in Egypt (HuffPost)
The Al Jazeera journalists who have been jailed in Egypt were denied their freedom once more on Sunday after failing to receive pardons from the country’s president. Al Jazeera journalists Peter Greste, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohammed have been detained in Egypt since December on charges of airing false news and conspiring with the Muslim Brotherhood. In June, the journalists were sentenced to seven to 10 years in prison.
Rodale Promotes Paul Collins (FishbowlNY)
Paul Collins has been promoted to associate publisher of Rodale’s Runner’s World and Running Times. Collins has been serving as ad director for both brands since 2010. Collins has been with Rodale since 2006. He previously served as Bicycling’s ad director and director of Rodale’s Sports Marketing & Events Group.
Scholastic to Shutter Storia (GalleyCat)
Scholastic is closing its children’s book platform app Storia in favor of pushing its subscription model reading platform Storia School Edition. Essentially the publisher will no longer be selling eBooks, and will instead offer access to its collection of 2,000 books for an annual subscription price that costs $2,000 (based on school size). There will also be a family plan available next year.
Ad Age Promotes Zmuda, Adds Two (FishbowlNY)
Ad Age has promoted Natalie Zmuda to deputy managing editor. She most recently served as marketing editor. Zmuda joined Ad Age in 2008, after five years with Condé Nast. Karen Edelman joins as senior editor of event content. For the past decade, Edelman ran a consulting firm that organized events for Forbes, Fortune and more. Malika Toure joins Ad Age as a reporter. Toure was most recently an intern for Ad Age’s sister pub Creativity.
New York Magazine’s Stefan Becket to Mic (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
Stefan Becket, the social media editor at New York Magazine, is leaving to become politics editor at Mic, the news and aggregation startup formerly known as PolicyMic. Jared Keller, another social media editor who worked for The Atlantic and Bloomberg Businessweek, joined Mic in April as director of programming.
German Broadcaster Next to Build Netflix Competitor (GigaOM)
Germany’s public broadcaster ARD is getting ready to build a Netflix competitor, again: ARD revealed in a recent fiscal filing that it is talking to producers and others about building an online video portal. The news comes ahead of Netflix’s launch in Germany in September, but ARD had been working for some time to prepare itself for a launch of the U.S. video service.
David Gregory Issues ‘End Note’ to Clarify Unverified Video From Gaza (TVNewser)
On Meet The Press Sunday, a guest called out David Gregory for being “unfair” in his line of questioning. While speaking to UN Relief spokesperson Chris Gunness, Gregory showed video which was posted Sunday morning by the Israeli government, claiming that rockets had been fired by Hamas from a UN school earlier in the week. HuffPost Later in the broadcast, Gregory told viewers that, despite the Israeli claims, the UN had confirmed that the video did not, in fact, show rockets being fired from a school.