Morning Media Newsfeed: SpinMedia Buys Vibe | Betaworks Buys Instapaper | Mercury News Layoffs

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SpinMedia Adds Vibe Magazine to Its Digital Portfolio, Minus the Magazine (AllThingsD)
SpinMedia is buying Vibe, the 20-year-old hip-hop and R&B magazine, from a consortium led by Intermedia and Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Companies. It plans on ending Vibe‘s print run in the coming months, and will add to its roster of 40+ pop culture and music sites. This will be bad news for some of Vibe Media’s 52 employees, who were told Thursday that layoffs will accompany the change of ownership. FishbowlNY SpinMedia’s official statement implied that this is what Vibe readers want. They’re accessing the magazine online and through their phones, the company said. And maybe that’s true. But still, it’s always sad when a magazine disappears. NYT After it bought Spin last summer, Buzz Media promptly shut down the print magazine and laid off a third of its staff. It said it would concentrate on the website and consider eventually reviving the print version of Spin in some form. Since then, Spin‘s online traffic has doubled, but Mr. Hansen said that the company was no closer to reviving the magazine.  Ad Age / Media News Time Inc. sold Vibe in 1996; the buyers sold Vibe again 10 years later. It went out of print in 2009, but returned within months under yet another set of owners, investors led by InterMedia Partners. Last summer the magazine said it would embrace electronic dance music along with its usual hip-hop and pop culture coverage. 

Jill Abramson and ‘The Sexist Stereotype’ (Politico / Dylan Byers on Media)
The piece, as I wrote it, was not intended to be about gender. Indeed, in the final day of reporting, I contacted four of my 14 sources — both male and female — and asked, “Is it possible that the criticisms of Jill that we’ve discussed stem from the fact that she is a woman, or a woman in power?” All four of those sources said, “No.” FishbowlDC The larger point is if we want to work in thoughtful workplaces with bland, mild-mannered bosses and coworkers who care about our feelings, get the hell out of the newsroom. These places are special, but they are not hotbeds of mental health and politeness doesn’t and shouldn’t abound. Get over it. And please, Jill, don’t change. Slate Luckily, popularity is not what wins you Pulitzers (the paper won four this year). As one reporter told me, “I hope this story doesn’t mean [Abramson] will lose her courage.” Apparently, she hasn’t, as she wrote to me in an email Thursday.

At The Times, the Future of Blogs is Uncertain (Capital New York)
The New York Times is deciding what to do with its dozens of blogs. Sources tell Capital that a review of the blogs is underway ahead of the paper’s planned web relaunch later this year. Asked about the status of Media Decoder, which had become a topic of interest among media wonks on Twitter these past few days, a Times spokesperson said the blog is “dormant, not dead.”

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Digg Owner Betaworks Buys Instapaper to Go Big on Social Reading and Discovery (TechCrunch)
Last summer, New York-based hybrid investor / incubator / holding company thing Betaworks acquired social news site Digg and relaunched it soon after, hoping to bring back some of its mojo in the process. Nine months later, Betaworks has acquired another news-oriented application, this time bringing Marco Arment’s popular story-saving app Instapaper into the fold. I’m happy to announce that I’ve sold a majority stake in Instapaper to Betaworks. We’ve structured the deal with Instapaper’s health and longevity as the top priority, with incentives to keep it going well into the future. I will continue advising the project indefinitely, while Betaworks will take over its operations, expand its staff, and develop it further. The Verge While it was an early pioneer in the world of iOS apps, in recent years Instapaper has faced increased competition from services like Pocket and Readability. But the deal could have even more interesting future ramifications for Betaworks.