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2:15 PM ET, January 3, 2018


 Top News: 
Michael Wolff / New York Magazine:
Book excerpt recounts Trump's interactions with various media figures including Roger Ailes, who encouraged him to float rumors of a TV network, and Murdoch  —  One year ago: the plan to lose, and the administration's shocked first days.  —  Election Night: It “looked as if he had seen a ghost.”
Michael M. Grynbaum / New York Times:
Showtime's political documentary series The Circus will return in April without Mark Halperin; he is being replaced by CBS news anchor Alex Wagner  —  The Showtime political documentary series “The Circus” is set to return in April, minus its most recognizable star: Mark Halperin …
Emily Smith / Page Six:
Sources: Today Show co-anchor Hoda Kotb is earning $18M less than her predecessor Matt Lauer, with a $7M/year deal, underlining huge wage disparity at NBC News  —  Hoda Kotb made history by officially landing Matt Lauer's former “Today” show job — but she is still being paid around $18 million less per year …
Eun Kyung Kim /
Hoda Kotb, who filled in for Matt Lauer since his firing, is named co-anchor of the Today show
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
The New York Times, constantly under attack from all quarters, often resorts to “both-sides” reporting that fails to properly challenge those with power  —  When most newspapers get a new publisher, few people know or care.  It gets a shrug, except by those directly affected.
James Risen / The Intercept:
James Risen says senior NYT editors regularly quashed, buried, or cut his stories that raised questions about Bush admin's pre-war intelligence on Iraq  —  I was sitting in the nearly empty restaurant of the Westin Hotel in Alexandria, Virginia, getting ready for a showdown with the federal government …
Tim Lockette / Anniston Star:
Former publisher and chairman of the company that publishes the Anniston Star, H. Brandt Ayers, accused of forced spanking staffers in the newsroom in the 1970s  —  A former Anniston Star reporter says that H. Brandt Ayers, chairman of the company that publishes the paper, sexually assaulted her in the 1970s in The Star's newsroom.
Sources: Amazon in talks with Clorox, Procter & Gamble, others about product promotion on Echo; some discussions focus on sponsorship options within skills  —  - Ads will focus on sponsorship opportunities within skills or use data about a buyer's shopping history to suggest products.
Elisabeth Bumiller / The New York Times Company:
Memo: The New York Times appoints Lara Jakes as a deputy editor of its Washington bureau, overseeing coverage of foreign policy  —  Lara Jakes has been named a deputy editor in Washington, overseeing the coverage of foreign policy.  Read more in this note from Elisabeth Bumiller:  —  Great news.
Eriq Gardner / Hollywood Reporter:
Spotify faces new copyright lawsuit from Wixen Music that suggests up to 21% of Spotify songs are unlicensed; plaintiff seeks $1.6B+ in damages  —  Wixen Music Publishing files a new lawsuit that also covers music from Rage Against the Machine, The Doors, Steely Dan, and many others.
Lucia Moses / Digiday:
News Corp CEO Robert Thomson says the company is in constant talks with Facebook and Google, praises Google CEO Sundar Pichai  —  This article appears in the latest issue of Digiday magazine, a quarterly publication that is part of Digiday+.  Members of Digiday+ get access to exclusive content …
Stephanie Chan / Hollywood Reporter:
Report: photographer Terry Richardson is being investigated by the NYPD's Special Victims Squad, after multiple women accused him of sexual assault  —  The investigation comes after the photographer was accused of rape by model Caron Bernstein.  —  Terry Richardson is under investigation by the New York Police Department.
Brian Steinberg / Variety:
CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin launches American Woman, an eight-part digital series profiling eminent women like Ava DuVernay and Sheryl Crow  —  Brooke Baldwin kicked off 2018 by anchoring CNN's raucous late-night New Year's Eve coverage with colleague Don Lemon.
Discussion: CNN
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 More News: 
Raymond Zhong / New York Times:
Source: Beijing Bytedance Technology, the parent company of Toutiao news app, valued at $20B, is in talks to raise funding that would value it at $30B+
Davey Alba / BuzzFeed:
Logan Paul debacle highlights YouTube's content moderation problem, as experts say Paul's video isn't something AI moderation could catch on its own
 Earlier Picks: 
Matthew Garrahan / Financial Times:
UK government to launch three-year, £60M fund in 2019 for public service broadcasters, which can claim 50% of production costs for children's programming
Emily Steel / New York Times:
Vice Media suspends President Andrew Creighton and Chief Digital Officer Mike Germano after NYT story on sex harassment allegations; new HR chief to be hired
Jake Tapper / CNN:
Twitter spokesperson confirms an email that said the account for former sheriff David Clarke was temporarily locked after he tweeted a physical threat to media