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Today's Headlines
Friday, 8/1/14

Time Warner's Bewkes Faces Grilling Over Fox Offer
New York Post
Jeff Bewkes will be on the hot seat next week when Time Warner reports results. The CEO will be grilled by Wall Street for rejecting an $80 billion offer from 21st Century Fox. Bewkes's quick rebuff of Fox's bid will put pressure on him to explain why his company is worth more alone.

Fox's Murdoch 'Unlikely' to Seek Takeover of BSkyB
Rupert Murdoch's bid for Time Warner is a bet on content — one that would raise European regulatory concerns if he circled back to seek full control of Sky Europe. The attempt would be almost unthinkable on competition grounds, experts said. "It would be extremely difficult."

Comcast Customer Pulls Gun on Serviceman Over Fee
An Albuquerque, N.M., woman has been accused of pulling a handgun on a Comcast serviceman after he informed her about cable fees that she said she didn't know about. According to the worker, he called 911 and left the customer's home because he "didn't want to get shot."

Viacom Spends Millions After MTV Shows Dead Body
Hollywood Reporter
Viacom had to spend millions of dollars after the MTV reality series "T.I.'s Road to Redemption" showed a dead body during its premiere episode. The media giant didn't believe it was financially responsible and has taken an insurance firm to court, seeking reimbursement of legal costs.

CBS 'Big Bang' Production Delayed in Contract Dispute
Associated Press
Production on a new season of "The Big Bang Theory" has been delayed because of a contract dispute with its top actors. Warner Brothers Television studio, which makes TV's most popular comedy, said that the scheduled first day of work after the summer hiatus was postponed.

ABC 'Good Morning America' Anchor Stalked at Studio
New York Post
A man has been arrested and accused of hounding "Good Morning America's" Robin Roberts. The man is said to have showed up at ABC's Times Square studios at least eight times, asking to see Roberts. "I'm going to punch her in the face," he reportedly said.

NBC's 'Meredith Vieira Show' Set for September Debut
Hollywood Reporter
The budget for "The Meredith Vieira Show," which will debut Sept. 8, is said to be close to $35 million not including the host's talent fee, which industry insiders put at $5 million. The syndicated show is more expensive than the average daytime talker, which costs about $20 million.

AMC Networks Said in Talks for Stake in BBC America
AMC Networks is said to be in talks to acquire almost 50% of BBC America, the U.S. channel of BBC Worldwide. The Dolan family-controlled cable programmer is believed to be interested in a partnership that lets BBC America use AMC's advertising sales and distribution network.

Scripps, Journal Merging Broadcast, Spinning Off Print
Associated Press
Journal Communications and E.W. Scripps have an agreement to merge broadcasting operations while spinning off newspaper holdings into a separate public entity. Journal broadcast assets will be folded into Scripps, creating the fifth-largest independent TV-station group in the country.

Cumulus Acquires CNN News Content for Radio Stations
New York Post
Cumulus has entered a deal with CNN Newsource that will provide its radio stations with content from the global news network. "The emphasis is more on shorter stories, less hard news," said Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey. Many stories are driven by "what's happening on social media."

Vice News: We're One of the World's Biggest Newscasts
Five months after its launch, Vice News on YouTube is "one of the biggest newscasts in America and possibly the world," said sales SVP Brian Dietz. The network has over 650,000 YouTube subscribers and has had 70 million views of its videos. Its success "has been surprising."

Apple TV Stalls as Cable Companies 'Drags Their Heels'
The Information
Apple's long-discussed, all-in-one box for accessing live and on-demand TV is not expected to launch this year. Company engineers are said to be working off timelines that now assume a rollout next year. Apple employees have said cable companies are "dragging their heels."

IAC's Aereo Writedown Leads to First Net Loss in Years
Shares in Barry Diller's IAC/InterActiveCorp fell after reporting its first quarterly loss in more than four years as the company wrote down its investment in Aereo. IAC said the largest portion of the writedown was for its stake in the Internet-TV startup, which has halted operations.

Snapchat in Alibaba Funding Talks at $10 Billion Value
Snapchat, the company that makes a mobile app for disappearing photo messages, is said to be in talks with investors including Alibaba for financing that may value the company at $10 billion. Snapchat could join a small group of tech startups valued in the eleven-digit range.

Twitter to Acquire Image Search Startup Firm Madbits
Twitter has acquired New York-based image search startup Madbits for an undisclosed amount. Madbits said it is "primarily interested in the task of image search, and the creation of intelligent, dynamic image sets, to automatically organize large databases of images."

Google Adds Ratings to Merchant Search-Results Ads
Wall Street Journal
Google has begun prodding merchants to provide more data to make its search results more effective — and more like Amazon. The Internet giant said it will add ratings to its so-called product-listing ads, which are used by merchants to sell their wares via Google search pages.

BuzzFeed Developing a Mobile App for Serious News
Advertising Age
BuzzFeed has begun developing an app to highlight the viral publisher's more serious reported news stories. The company is in the "embryonic stage" of building the app and is looking for a journalist to lead the effort. "It's going to be one of the most fun jobs in journalism."

News Corp Mulls Developing News App for Millennials
Financial Times
News Corp. is said to be considering the development of an app-based news service aimed at "millennial" readers. The effort suggests Rupert Murdoch's enthusiasm for digital journalism has not dimmed two years after he closed The Daily, the company's tablet-based newspaper.

Tribune Publishing's Future Examined Ahead of Debut
Crain's Chicago
Will Tribune Publishing sink or swim? Media observers say to keep an eye on six figures: revenue, cash, costs, debt, profit and circulation. The newspapers seem to have accepted a declining print readership, with the Chicago Tribune removing many of its street boxes.

Washington Post: We're Experimenting in Every Way
Capital New York
Marty Baron, editor of the Washington Post: "We're experimenting every which way right now. We have a whole set of new verticals, blogs, whatever you want to call them. We created a breaking news team. They're all layered on top of the more traditional journalism we continue to do."

Boston Globe Staffs Up for New Catholicism News Site
Boston Globe
Boston Herald columnist Margery Eagan has joined the Boston Globe as a spirituality columnist for its forthcoming Catholicism-news website, Crux. The new site plans to cover the institution of the church, with focus on how the words and actions of Pope Francis affect Catholics worldwide.

Hearst: Harper's Bazaar to Run Global Photo Portfolio
Carine Roitfeld's big project as global fashion director of Harper's Bazaar will be unveiled on Aug. 19. Her portfolio of 19 images of well-known women — from Lady Gaga to Lauren Hutton — will run in all 30 editions of the magazine. Hearst gave Roitfeld "a huge amount of power."

Rodale: Men's Health Global Covers Showcase Ronaldo
NBC Sports
People around the world will soon become even more familiar with Cristiano Ronaldo. The Real Madrid and Portugal soccer star will appear on the cover of Men's Health in over 60 countries for the September edition. Ronaldo's body will adorn the cover of 41 editions.

Recent Headlines
Media news by sector


Time Inc's App Challenger to ESPN Reports a 'Victory'
Wall Street Journal
120 Sports may not take down ESPN overnight. But the sports-news mobile app, which is backed by Time Inc. and major sports leagues, is off to a decent start. Since launching in late June, 120 Sports has ranked as high as No. 72 in Apple's app store, which is seen as a "victory."

Conde Nast's The New Yorker Hires Ad Agency SS+K
The New Yorker has a redesigned website, a new paywall system in the works and now an advertising agency to promote it all. SS+K has landed the assignment after a review. Initially, the firm will develop a brand campaign and marketing around the magazine's 90th anniversary.

Hearst's Good Housekeeping Amping Up in Fashion
In an effort to amp up the fashion quota — and presumably advertising — Good Housekeeping editor in chief Jane Francisco has recruited Lori Bergamotto as style director and Kristen Mascia as features editor. They are among four new hires, but their roles are newly created posts.

News Corp UK Tabloid Criticized for 'Devil Boy' Story
The Drum
Britain's top-selling tabloid the Sun has been ridiculed heavily on Twitter and criticized by members of parliament for running a story featuring a 4-year-old boy seemingly with the "mark of the devil." Critics have commented that the story could endanger the child.

New York Times Mulls Shorter, Cheaper Print Edition
Capital New York
The New York Times is considering the introduction of a truncated version of its daily print edition at a discounted rate, as the newspaper mulls new strategies for paid content. The potential offering "would be significantly shorter and offer a selection of the day's best content for half the price."

Hearst Finds a Business in Ranch's Grass-Fed Beef
SF Gate
Steve Hearst is as comfortable in a newsroom as on a horse. He worked in newspapers for several decades. But these days, he's at Hearst Ranch in California several times a month, overseeing the beef operation. The ranch claims to be the biggest U.S. single-source supplier of grass-fed beef.

Conde Nast Seeking Publisher for Details Magazine
Details magazine has more than one job to fill since publisher Kevin Martinez jumped ship two weeks ago to join rival Maxim. Martinez is said to have looted his former employer Conde Nast of eight employees — six from Details and two from sister titles Lucky and Wired.

Atlantic Media Taps CNN Host Zakaria as Contributor
Huffington Post
CNN host Fareed Zakaria plans to join Atlantic Media in September as a contributing editor for both The Atlantic and Quartz. Zakaria's work will appear in both the magazine as well as online. "This is one of those wonderful high-water marks in The Atlantic’s 157 year history."

The Hill Names Editor in Chief, Other Appointments
The Hill
The Hill has named Bob Cusack editor in chief. Cusack served as managing editor, leading the day-to-day management of the publication for Washington policy influencers, since 2004. "Bob has played a leading role in keeping The Hill at the forefront of Washington coverage."

Washington Times, Redskins Team Up Amid Dispute
The Washington Times has struck a deal with the Washington Redskins that includes marketing and content-sharing initiatives. The partnership will include special year-round coverage of the team by the Times. The news comes amid a still-simmering controversy over the NFL team's name.

New York Times Profit Falls Despite Circulation Gains
New York Times
Increased investments in digital products and a decline in print advertising weighed on the New York Times's second-quarter earnings, as profit slipped 21%. "We still have more work to do to transform our business and deliver long-term sustainable revenue growth for the company."

Hustler Magazine's Days Are Numbered, Flynt Says
Hustler magazine's Larry Flynt: "I don't think Hustler is going to be around very much longer, because most people are getting their information from the Internet. It's making money now. As long as it makes money I'll continue to publish. But we can see the handwriting on the wall.”

First Look Media Revises Focus as Lab for Journalism
First Look Media has $250 million in funding, has hired 25 journalists and is setting up new offices in San Francisco and New York. But it still hasn't nailed down what it wants to be. That's the gist of a new blog post from Pierre Omidyar, the billionaire eBay founder backing the project.

Survey: Journos See Link Between Social Media, News
PR Week
Journalists believe that social media plays a vital role in driving the effect and success of traditional news stories, according to a survey by Ogilvy Public Relations. "What we found is what we thought we were going to find: the link between earned and social media is here to stay."

Report: Newspapers Lose Another 1,300 Editorial Staffers
The new American Society of News Editors annual newsroom census has found a net loss of another 1,300 full-time professionals last year. That was better than the 2,600 net job loss in 2012, but brings total newsroom newspaper employment to roughly 36,800, a decline of 3.2%.


Disney-ABC's 'Katie' Ends as Couric Aggregates News
USA Today
Katie Couric is wrapping up her talk show as she moves on to Yahoo News. Look for hugs and confetti and on Wednesday's "farewell" episode of "Katie." Couric is urging fans to sign up for her "FYI" newsletter. "It's the stories I'm reading every morning. Just call me 'Katie Curator'!"

ESPN Suspends Host After Domestic Abuse Remarks
CNN Money
ESPN has announced a one-week suspension for one of its most controversial commentators, Stephen A. Smith, in the wake of his widely-criticized remarks about domestic abuse that referred to possible "provocation" by victims. The move came a day after he apologized.

CNN Overtakes MSNBC In July as Ratings Take a Hit
Hollywood Reporter
The cable news ratings seesaw for No. 2 has been in MSNBC's favor for some time, but not in July. CNN reclaimed runner-up status to Fox News Channel for the month by most key measures. Most disconcerting for MSNBC might be its total day average among adults 25 to 54.

CBS Shifts TV Schedule to Boost Ratings for 'Extant'
Associated Press
"Extant" is getting a kick-start from CBS to try to improve its ratings less than a month into its run. Starting Wednesday, the network is moving the drama starring Halle Berry back an hour, to 10 p.m. ET, so that it follows "Criminal Minds," which is seen as a more compatible lead-in.

Fox's 'Simpsons' to Feature Elon Musk as Guest Star
Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur who runs Tesla Motors, will take on miserly power plant owner Montgomery Burns in a future episode of 'The Simpsons." Musk will portray himself in an episode in which he battles the wealthy nuclear plant operator Burns in Fox's hit animated series.

NBC's 'Talent' Viewers Can Go Online to Save Acts
Broadcasting & Cable
NBCUniversal and sponsor Snapple have created a new feature for "America's Got Talent" that lets viewers save their favorite acts online. Beginning Wednesday, viewers can prevent an act from being eliminated from the show in real time by typing "Snapple Save" on Google.

Time Warner Cable Bashed by FCC Over Dodgers TV
Los Angeles Times
The Federal Communications is not happy with Time Warner Cable about the Dodgers TV situation. In a blistering letter to TWC CEO Rob Marcus, FCC chief Tom Wheeler criticized the company for its inability to reach agreements with area pay-TV distributors for SportsNet LA.

NBCUniversal's E! Head Faces the Axe as Ratings Fall
Nikki Finke: "I've learned that E! president Suzanne Kolb is getting the boot in early fall after three years in the job. E!'s ratings overall were down 20% in 2013. And in 2014 they're down another 20%. 'Her bosses are aware of the situation and know they have to make a change.' "

Fox Pulls Ads from Entercom Stations After Comment
Boston Globe
Boston WEEI sports radio host Kirk Minihane has been suspended without pay for a week for "boorish" comments he made about Fox Sports reporter Erin Andrews. His suspension came after Fox Sports said it was pulling all advertising from WEEI owner Entercom's 100+ stations nationwide.

ESPN Host Apologizes for Domestic Violence Remark
Daily News
With a weekend to think about his remarks about domestic violence, Stephen A. Smith appeared on ESPN's "First Take" Monday morning and offered an apology for his comments on the issue made on Friday. "I made what can only amount to the most egregious error of my career."

Fox Sports, Sporting News Enter Digital Partnership
Fox Sports Digital and Sporting News Media plan to share content and traffic across their top sports properties, including, and The partnership's reach is expected to be a minimum of 55 million digital sports fans in the U.S. every month.

Time Warner Cable Seeks to End Dodger TV Standoff
Los Angeles Times
Time Warner Cable is willing to let an arbitrator determine a fair price for SportsNet LA in the hopes of resolving its dispute with DirecTV and other pay-TV providers over distribution of the Dodger-owned channel. "Given the current circumstance, we are willing to agree to arbitration."

C-SPAN Preps Move Behind the Cable-TV Paywall
C-SPAN will soon require a pay-TV subscription to watch its flagship channels on the Internet. The nonprofit network, created by the cable industry 35 years ago, is currently available for free online. "Technology was giving an easy end-around to our core business model."

Sirius XM Sees Profit Fall Despite Subscriber Gain
Wall Street Journal
Sirius XM's second-quarter profit fell 4.4%, as higher operating expenses offset a notable gain in revenue and net subscribers. The satellite radio provider had a record 26.3 million total paid subscribers at the end of the period, 5% higher than at the same point a year earlier.

Al Jazeera America Viewing Surges on Gaza Coverage
Baltimore Sun
The audience for Al Jazeera America has jumped 30% overall the last two weeks during the Gaza conflict, the news channel said. In prime time, it's up 40%, compared to the month before. That's big news for U.S. Al Jazeera, which has struggled in the ratings since its launch a year ago.


Apple TV Set-Top Box Adds CNBC, Fox Now to Lineup
Apple has grown its lineup of channels on its TV set-top box, this time with CNBC, Fox Now and two regional channels. Apple TV has been adding more content as the company fights a handful of competitors — including Roku, Amazon and Google — in the streaming-media device market.

Netflix, AT&T Enter Peering Deal to Reduce Buffering
Netflix has reached an agreement to give its streaming service direct access to AT&T's network, with the goal of reducing buffering when subscribers watch shows like "House of Cards" and "Orange Is the New Black." The so-called peering deal went into effect on Tuesday.

Hulu Former CEO's Startup Eyes Talent on YouTube
Jason Kilar, former CEO of Hulu, is working on a new video startup called Vessel, which has a business model that might make YouTube sweat. Vessel is said to be targeting top talent on premium YouTube channels. It might be able to promise content partners a larger payout.

Google Sued by Former F1 Boss Over Sex Party Photos
Max Mosley, the former head of Formula One, has launched a legal action against Google in the U.K., demanding that the search engine remove images of him at a sex party. The high court challenge could set a significant legal precedent in the control of online privacy.

Twitter Shares Soar After Company Trumps Forecasts
Twitter shares jumped sharply after the social media company easily topped earnings and revenue expectations. The company reported revenue of $312 million, an increase of 124% year-over-year. "There's a lot of room for expansion, a lot of room for multiple revenue sources."

Amazon Tests New Homepage Design Pushing Brands
Fast Company
Amazon has unveiled a new homepage design to select users, placing a new emphasis on the company's biggest brands: the Kindle e-book platform, its Fire tablets and smartphones, and the Prime subscription service. So far, not everyone is "blown away" by the new look.

Electronic Arts Tests Games Subscription on Xbox One
Electronic Arts has started testing a monthly subscription service that lets players download games to Microsoft's Xbox One consoles. Under the beta test, players can buy a $4.99-a-month membership for unlimited access to four titles, including "Madden NFL 25" and "Battlefield 4."

Microsoft Gives Staff Sneak Peek at New 'Selfie' Phone
Microsoft's hardware chief is said to have given employees a sneak peek at a "selfie" phone featuring a 5 megapixel forward-facing camera at an internal meeting this week. The 4.7-inch screen "selfie" phone, plus another high-end Windows phone, are expected to launch soon.

IAC/InterActive Unit Agrees to Buy Princeton Review
New York Times
Barry Diller's IAC is betting on the business of test preparation. The company's online tutoring unit,, plans to buy the Princeton Review, whose test preparation guides are familiar to students studying for the SAT and other tests, from Charlesbank Capital Partners.

Amazon, Alloy Team Up for Digital Publishing Imprint
New York Times
Amazon Publishing and Alloy Entertainment, a book packager and division of Warner. Bros Television Group, have collaborated on a new digital publishing imprint for young adult, new adult and commercial fiction. The imprint, called Alloy Entertainment, has released its first three titles.

Yelp Adds Video Feature in Mobile App to Lure Users
USA Today
User-generated business review company Yelp has added a video feature to its iPhone app. The feature, which allows users to showcase business aspects like ambiance, lighting or noise level in 3-to-12 second videos, is an upgrade on a photo feature that already existed for users.

Medium Blog Platform by Twitter Guys Runs First Ads
Advertising Age
Medium's latest "collection" — the blogging platform's term for a digital publication — has brought something new to the site: advertising. The sponsorship by BMW is the first attempt by Medium, created in 2012 by Twitter co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone, to generate revenue.

Contently Launches Arm for Investigative Journalism
Contently, which helps build "plumbing" for brand publishing, has launched a nonprofit arm for investigative journalism. is "our way of planting trees," said co-founder Shane Snow. "We've always considered ourselves a tech company that cares about the future of media."

Rhapsody, T-Mobile to Battle Music-Streaming Giants
New York Post
Rhapsody, as it surpasses the 2 million-paid-subscriber mark, plans an aggressive marketing push with T-Mobile that includes an all-you-can-eat, advertising-free music service for $3.99 a month. The service, called Rhapsody UnRadio, aims to put pressure Spotify and Pandora.

Netflix: No Comment on Possibility of Adding 'Seinfeld'
The Internet was all in a tizzy last week after Jerry Seinfeld alluded to the possibility of "Seinfeld" becoming available for streaming on Netflix. The classic sitcom's current syndication deals for both cable and broadcast TV expire this fall. A spokesman for Netflix has declined to comment.


Marketers Hope to Bridge Gap in Mobile Ad Spending
Financial Times
Tech groups have been laying big bets on mobile advertising, as consumer attention shifts from print and radio to smartphones and tablets. But mobile marketing remains a realm of hesitation and experimentation. The tools for measuring effectiveness "are still being built."

Report: Outside Money Drives Deluge of Political Ads
New York Times
An explosion of spending on TV political advertising — set to break $2 billion in congressional races, with overall spots up nearly 70% since the 2010 midterm election — is said to be accelerating the rise of moneyed interests and wresting control from candidates' efforts to reach voters.

Publicis Mulls Digital Acquisitions in 'Difficult' Year
Financial Times
Publicis, the French advertising group, has revised its growth plan with a view to accelerate investment and make new digital media acquisitions, after its $35 billion merger with Omnicom fell apart in May. "People who don't have enough assets in digital will end up hugely disappointed."

EMarketer: Mobile's Ad Share Is Passing Newspapers
Wall Street Journal
American media habits are changing — and the advertising dollars are following. Ad spending on smartphones and tablets will this year eclipse radio, magazines and newspapers, according to eMarketer. Spending on mobile is predicted to jump 83% in 2014 to nearly $18 billion.

CBS Outdoor Buys 1,100 Billboards from Van Wagner
CBS Outdoor Americas plans to buy some outdoor advertising businesses from privately held U.S. billboard company Van Wagner for $690 million in cash. The deal includes about 1,100 large-format billboard displays in 11 U.S. markets with total revenue of $206 million in 2013.

Report: Advertisers Moving Money From TV to Digital
Wall Street Journal
Procter & Gamble and General Motors, two of the biggest U.S. advertisers, have scaled back their advertising commitments to TV networks during the annual "upfront" negotiations. While both companies still devote most of their ad dollars to TV, they have begun moving more into digital.

Nielsen, Facebook to Track Shows Watched on Devices
Washington Post
Nielsen has turned to Facebook to find out what you're watching on your mobile device. Starting this fall, Facebook will track the shows its users watch on their phones and tablets and send demo data to the TV ratings company. The arrangement was announced last October.

Report: Political TV Ads Take Targeting to Next Level
Wall Street Journal
Politicians are moving away from blanket TV advertising now that they have sophisticated ways to figure out which kinds of voters or potential voters are watching which kinds of programs and when. "Instead of sending a letter to a post box, we're sending a 30-second spot to a TV set."

Study: Binge TV Viewers Are More Receptive to Ads
Wall Street Journal
Netflix and others are making it easier for consumers to indulge in hours-long sessions of their favorite TV show. Where does that leave advertisers? New research finds that many viewers are willing to tolerate ads while binge-viewing if it lowers their subscription rates.

Report: Digital Ad Fraud Reaching 'Crisis Proportions'
Financial Times
The automation of the advertising industry was supposed to reduce waste. But in a quest for greater efficiency, marketers have exposed themselves to a new challenge: fraud. The fastest-growing part of the sector — open exchanges — is increasingly being exploited by criminals.

WWP's Sorrell: 10 Trends Shaping Global Ad Business
Martin Sorrell, founder and CEO of WPP: "New York is still very much the center of the world, but power is becoming more widely distributed, marching South, East and South East: to Latin America, India, China, Russia, Africa and the Middle East, and Central and Eastern Europe."

EMarketer: Advertisers Scramble to Spend on Mobile
Financial Times
U.S. advertising spending on mobile devices will pass all other digital ads in two years and account for more than a quarter of total marketing budgets by 2018, according to eMarketer. "Consumers are spending more of their digital media time with their smartphones and tablets."

YouTube's AwesomenessTV Steals TV Ad Spending
Advertising Age
At least one YouTube network has stolen advertising money from TV. Royal Caribbean has pulled funds from its TV budget to sponsor two new series from teen-centric YouTube network AwesomenessTV. DreamWorks Animation bought AwesomenessTV for $33.5 million last May.

Survey: Advertisers Up Spending on Twitter, Facebook
Advertising Age
As marketers plan for the coming year, they appear to be looking more at Twitter, according to a recent survey. Some 63% of respondents said they planned to increase their spending on Twitter over the next year. By comparison, 59% said they expect to spend more on Facebook.


Fox, Time Warner Seen 'Long, Long Way' from a Deal
Dick Parsons, former CEO of Time Warner, said Rupert Murdoch's $75 billion offer for his old company was "way off the mark." Parsons served as top exec from 2002 to 2008. "I know the management well because I put most of them in place." Time Warner is a "long, long way" from a deal.

Time Warner to Press HBO Distributers for More Cash
New York Post
Time Warner boss Jeff Bewkes is said to be planning to get tough with HBO's pay-TV partners. Under pressure from Wall Street to boost growth, Bewkes is expected to press distributors when renewing deals to share more of the proceeds from HBO promotional subscribers.

Fox: Murdoch's Ex-Son-in-Law Rejects BSkyB Offer
Crispin Odey, former son-in-law of Rupert Murdoch, has rejected BSkyB's offer to buy up shares of Sky Deutschland. Odey is Sky Deutschland's second biggest shareholder. The proposal "understates the value of the company." Odey was once married to Murdoch's daughter Prudence.

Liberty Global's Next Step Is Pursuing Media Content
Wall Street Journal
Amid a global race to keep up with Google and other tech companies, Liberty Global now needs media assets to complement its cable empire. "It's the 'eat or be eaten' drive of capitalism," said chief John Malone. "Scale economics are compelling in the media space."

DreamWorks Says SEC Probing Write-Down of Movie
DreamWorks Animation said the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating its write-down of film inventory on "Turbo." The company's shares fell nearly 9% after the movie studio also said quarterly revenue almost halved. "Turbo," about a garden snail, performed poorly.

Disney Bolsters Asia Executive Suite with New Boss
Screen International
Paul Candland has been named to the newly created position of president of the Walt Disney Co., Asia. The 16-year company veteran will oversee Japan, South Korea, Southeast Asia and Greater China. "Asia is a region of incredible growth and great promise for Disney."

DreamWorks Taps Disney Veteran as Operating Chief
Los Angeles Times
DreamWorks Animation has promoted Ann Daly to company president and named former Disney exec Mark Zoradi as its chief operating officer. The company said the changes were intended to help DreamWorks grow as an increasingly diversified family entertainment business.

Time Warner's To-Do List Is Topped by Fixing Turner
Wall Street Journal
If Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes is to fight off 21st Century Fox's takeover advances, he must show his media company would be better off on its own. Key to this is fixing the Turner Broadcasting unit, which houses TNT, TBS and CNN, and accounts for half of the media giant's profits.

Comcast Renames University Arena After Xfinity Brand
Baltimore Sun
The University of Maryland's Comcast Center, home of the school's basketball teams, has been renamed the Xfinity Center at the request of the media giant, which is eager to promote its "Xfinity" brand. Comcast has held naming rights under a $20 million, 25-year agreement.

Fox's Bid for Time Warner to Include Board Seat Offer
Wall Street Journal
21st Century Fox is said to be prepared to offer board seats to shareholders of Time Warner as part of its bid to acquire the media company. However, the offer is likely to make no difference in Time Warner's deliberations, given the limited role of Fox's board.

Time Warner Pushes HBO Web Growth Amid Bid Battle
Jeff Bewkes is said to be 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 Rupert Murdoch. HBO may expand a $49-a-month trial introduced last year with Comcast.

Liberty Media to Form New Company with Cable Assets
John Malone's Liberty Media has started the process of spinning off its cable assets through a stock dividend to its shareholders to form a new listed company called Liberty Broadband. The spun-off company will house Liberty's stake in Charter and investment in Time Warner Cable.

Fox Leaks Details of Bid for Time Warner in Strategy
After various news outlets caught wind that Time Warner was a possible acquisition target, Rupert Murdoch and the team at 21st Century Fox are said to have decided to get the full details out. Murdoch "has a clear understanding of the impact media exposure gives his efforts."

Media's Old Guard in Fight Against Amazon, Google
Even if 21st Century Fox were combined with Time Warner, the merged business would be just more than a third the size of Google in market cap, and only around a quarter the size of Apple. "The Murdochs can legitimately argue that they need to make a land-grab to ensure Fox's survival."

U.S. Regulators Likely to Block One Big Media Deal
Multichannel News
The growing number of media deals could force U.S. regulators to block at least one of them, according to influential analyst Craig Moffett. "Media consolidation is always unpopular — and all the more so now when merger mania has seemingly run amok." But which one will get the boot?




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