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11:55 AM ET, March 5, 2018


 Top News: 
Gardiner Harris / New York Times:
State Department has spent $0 of the $120M allocated by Congress since late-2016 to counter foreign efforts to meddle in elections or sow distrust in democracy  —  WASHINGTON — As Russia's virtual war against the United States continues unabated with the midterm elections approaching …
Discussion: Slate and The Week, more at Techmeme »
The New York Times Company:
The New York Times promotes Deputy Culture Editor Patrick Healy to role of politics editor  —  Patrick Healy has been named politics editor.  Read more in this memo from Dean Baquet, Joe Kahn and Matt Purdy.  —  The midterm elections are shaping up as an epic battle …
Brands like Nike, Expedia, Acer suspend ads on Infowars' YouTube channels when contacted by CNN; some wonder why YouTube filters failed to block ads on Infowars  —  Facebook, YouTube fail to blunt conspiracy theories  —  Some of the biggest brands in the U.S. had ads running on the YouTube channels …
Paul Farhi / Washington Post:
A look at NewsGuard, led by Steven Brill and Gordon Crovitz, which has raised $6M and plans to use journalists to rate reliability of ~7,500 online news sources  —  Media entrepreneur Steven Brill thinks there's something missing from all the efforts to separate fake news from the real kind: Some smart and discerning humans.
Discussion: CNNMoney
Joey Rhyu / Facebook Media:
Facebook has been testing adding a breaking news label to stories and is now expanding that beta to publishers in Latin America, Europe, and Australia  —  Earlier this year we made a commitment to show more high quality news on Facebook.  People tell us they want to see informative news …
Discussion: Search Engine Journal
Cynthia Littleton / Variety:
Early estimates from Nielsen suggest ratings for Sunday's 90th Academy Awards dropped significantly since last year's show  —  Live viewership of the 90th annual Academy Awards ceremony was down significantly from the 2017 telecast, according to preliminary Nielsen ratings for ABC's nearly four-hour telecast.
Issie Lapowsky / Wired:
Facebook says it doesn't know how many followed Russia's IRA accounts on Instagram; researcher finds that 27 of 170 deleted accounts had ~2.2M followers total  —  FOR MORE THAN a year, Jonathan Albright has served as something of a one-man General Accounting Office for the tech industry.
Wayne Ma / Wall Street Journal:
Marriott US staffer says he was fired after HR questioned him on Tibet related tweet he liked via Marriott's account; China pressured Marriott over Tibet issue  —  The severity of the penalty—termination, not reprimand—highlights the unforgiving consequences for companies that offend China
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
The world - and Hollywood - has changed since last year's Oscars, thanks to courageous reporting by the press on men like Harvey Weinstein  —  The world has changed since last year's Oscars — and for the better.  —  So let's not forget what got us there: great journalism.
Joseph Bernstein / BuzzFeed:
Profile of PragerU, a nonprofit site whose five minute explainer videos, presented by well-known conservative pundits, have amassed 1B+ YouTube, Facebook views  —  A right-wing online “university” is on track for a billion views in 2018, its professors are some of the best-known conservatives in media …
Zoë Beery / Columbia Journalism Review:
Journalists say the editing tests they're given during the hiring process amount to too much unpaid work and often receive no feedback  —  In the spring of 2015, GQ asked freelance writer and editor Beejoli Shah to produce a four-page front-of-book section for the magazine.
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 More News: 
Mars Woo / DealStreetAsia:
Bilibili, China's biggest video streaming platform for anime, is planning an IPO in the US and hopes to raise $400M
Discussion: Variety
Carlotta Gall / New York Times:
Turkish government attempts to clamp down on country's digital media with proposed law which will make broadcasting via internet illegal without a license
Christine Schmidt / Nieman Lab:
Profile of Outlier Media, a free text message-based news service for low-income residents in Detroit offering to check the public record of houses or landlords
New York Times:
Advertisers complain Facebook is inconsistent and gender biased in its process of determining whether images should be rejected for being sexually suggestive
 Earlier Picks: 
Shan Wang / Nieman Lab:
Interview with Anna Veduta, one of two people running the English-language version of Latvia-based Meduza, an independent Russian news site
Max Willens / Digiday:
Publishers like ViralNova, 9gag, Bored Panda, Diply see engagement drop precipitously after Facebook algorithm changes; Distractify saw traffic decline 78% YoY
Rick Gladstone / New York Times:
World's longest-imprisoned journalist, Yusuf Ruzimuradov, has been freed in Uzbekistan after spending 19 years in jail