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5:45 AM ET, June 26, 2018


 Top News: 
Lara O'Reilly / Wall Street Journal:
AT&T confirms it will buy AppNexus, which operates one of the largest independent ad exchanges; sources last week said the price was expected to be around $1.6B  —  Following acquisitions of AppNexus and Time Warner, telecom giant wants to do more than capitalize on its own content
New York Times:
Former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer to film a pilot episode of a talk show tentatively titled Sean Spicer's Common Ground, no network is attached  —  Ellen.  Oprah.  —  ... Sean?  —  Sean Spicer, arguably the world's most famous White House press secretary …
Raycom Media-owned local newspaper chain CNHI to explore sale of newspapers in 22 states after Raycom agreed to Gray Television group acquisition  —  MONTGOMERY, Ala. - CNHI, LLC, one of the country's leading providers of local news and information, said Monday it is exploring the sale of its newspaper properties in 22 states.
Munsif Vengattil / Reuters:
Gray Television to buy Raycom Media in a cash and stock deal worth $3.65B; combined company will have 142 stations in 92 markets and reach ~24% of US households  —  (Reuters) - Gray Television Inc (GTN.N) said on Monday it would buy privately held rival broadcaster Raycom Media Inc in a cash …
Apple is launching a new 2018 Midterm Elections section in Apple News, offering exclusive features from Washington Post, Axios, and Politico  —  An Easy Way to Follow the Elections, With Reporting From Trusted Sources Curated by Apple News Editors  —  Cupertino, California …
The Daily Beast:
Sources: Fox News suspends contributor and former Trump aide David Bossie for two weeks after Bossie made a racist comment on Fox & Friends Weekend  —  David Bossie, the former deputy campaign manager for Donald Trump and current outside adviser to the president, has been suspended …
Patrick Brzeski / Hollywood Reporter:
Wanda Film to acquire 96.8% stake in Wanda Media for $1.78B as part of restructuring plan, will invest in content production and online games  —  Wanda's U.S. film companies — AMC Entertainment and Legendary Entertainment — aren't included in the proposed deal, which aims to bring …
Discussion: China Film Insider and Asia Times
Seb Joseph / Digiday:
Sources: programmatic ad spending, which saw steep declines after GDPR, has started to recover with some publishers' audience opt-in consent rates hitting 75%  —  Programmatic ad spending has started to recover a month after the arrival of the General Data Protection Regulation caused it to nosedive.
Sahil Patel / Digiday:
In August, local Fox stations to air Phone Swap, a Vertical Networks dating show launched on Snapchat and averaging 10M viewers per episode across two seasons  —  Elisabeth Murdoch's digital media company Vertical Networks is best known for producing video shows for Snapchat and Facebook.
Marlee Baldridge / Nieman Lab:
The Sacramento Bee is trying to increase its subscriptions from 15K to 60K within the next few years, to become completely sustained by reader revenue  —  “We're looking hard at what types of stories drive digital-only subscriptions.  We know the last story someone read before they hit the meter …
A look at the journalists fighting for press freedom across Southeast Asia, in the Philippines, Cambodia, Myanmar, Singapore, Vietnam, and Malaysia  —  Southeast Asia may never have been a paragon of the free press, but the democratic strides it made in the late '80s and '90s are rapidly unraveling.
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 Featured Newsletter: 
Major news publishers grow revenue with a blend of subscriptions and advertising  —  Subscription models aren't right for every publisher, but some are building robust advertising and subscription businesses alongside each other.
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 More News: 
New York Times:
Chinese authorities have blocked HBO's website after John Oliver mocked China's president Xi Jinping; does not serve as a streaming portal in China
Hadas Gold / CNNMoney:
Facebook quietly launches Grow, a high-end print marketing campaign magazine in the UK and Northern Europe targeting business leaders
David Beard / Poynter:
When Reveal tried promoting a story about a migrant center housing children on Facebook, Facebook labeled it a political ad and required Reveal to be registered
The Guardian:
Brexit donor Arron Banks discussed using private investigators to dig up personal info on then BBC Newsnight Editor Ian Katz following story about his finances
Danah Boyd / Medium:
Rebuilding trust in US journalism lies in creating business models that allow local journalism to profit without ROI pressure and are driven by social benefits
 Earlier Picks: 
Stewart Clarke / Variety:
Discovery and German TV giant ProSiebenSat.1 have invited German broadcasters to join their new streaming service and compete with Netflix
Discussion: Broadcasting & Cable
A profile of Jeffrey Rambo, the CBP officer who confronted reporter Ali Watkins, slammed immigrants, and called them “'hyphenated-Americans”
Thomas Claburn / The Register:
Microsoft and Ernst & Young announce blockchain-based content rights and royalties management network, first to be deployed for Microsoft's gaming partners
Sam Thielman / Columbia Journalism Review:
Astroturfing of outlets like NYT and WaPo by a group funded by restaurant owners shows the need for journalists to dig deeper while covering activists