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6:35 PM ET, February 22, 2019

Mediagazer

 Top News: 
Jonathan O'Connell / Washington Post:
Senator Chuck Schumer, troubled by Alden Capital's history, writes a letter to its president demanding it explain its plans for Gannett if a deal goes through  —  A firm backed by Alden Global Capital, known for sharp newsroom cuts, would acquire more than 100 daily newspapers in the deal.
RELATED:
RELATED:
CNBC:
AT&T says it is pulling all advertising from YouTube after reports of pedophiles openly using the platform; Nestle and Epic Games have also pulled ads
Chuck Strouse / Miami New Times:
McClatchy CEO says ~225 employees have accepted buyout offers across the country with sources saying the Miami Herald is losing at least 10 employees  —  McClatchy Co. CEO Craig Forman announced Wednesday that “a bit fewer” than 225 employees had accepted buyout offers and would be leaving newspapers across the country.
Benjamin Mullin / Wall Street Journal:
Sources: in editorial call, CNN head Zucker defends hiring former Trump admin official Sara Isgur, emphasizes she won't make decisions about political coverage  —  On an editorial call, Jeff Zucker endorses former Justice Department official Sarah Isgur, clarifying her role and title
Discussion: @coreypein
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Erik Wemple / Washington Post:
CNN hiring Sarah Isgur is puzzling given her reported loyalty pledge to Trump's anti-press agenda and numerous critical tweets of CNN, reporters, and Democrats
Peter Georgiev / Reynolds Journalism Institute:
As increased use of algorithms in journalism raises questions of responsibility for libel, some stress the importance of transparency in code  —  “I will work tirelessly to keep you informed as texts will be typed into my system uninterrupted.”  —  This is how Xinhua News' artificial …
Sahil Patel / Digiday:
Source: Barstool Sports made $15M+ in podcasting revenue in 2018; CEO says over half its ad revenue is from podcasts with average rate per spot up 30% YoY  —  Barstool Sports recorded more than $15 million in podcasting revenue in 2018, according to a source.
Discussion: MediaPost
Casey Newton / The Interface:
Pinterest has stopped returning results for searches on vaccinations, differentiating between freedom of speech and freedom of reach  —  Programming note: The Interface will be off Thursday as I finish up a project that I will share with you next week.  —  Since the reckoning …
Antonia Noori Farzan / Washington Post:
An Arizona cop threatened to arrest 12-year-old journalist Hilde Lysiak while she was reporting; Lysiak uploaded the exchange on YouTube and her own website  —  When a small-town Arizona cop stopped a 12-year-old reporter who was chasing down a story tip on Monday, he probably had no idea what he was getting himself into.
Tim Ingham / Rolling Stone:
DJ Marshmello's concert on Fortnite drew a peak crowd of 10.7M and led to 100M rise in his YouTube views; the DJ was equipped with a body-motion suit to perform  —  Ten million virtual souls showed up for two epic DJ sets.  It was a masterstroke in global music marketing
Discussion: The Verge and Variety
 
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 More News: 
Recode:
AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson discusses the rise of sports betting, being inspired by Bleacher Report's extreme a la carte offers, and nonexclusive content deals
Ira Boudway / Bloomberg:
Chernin Group's Action Network, a sports betting media startup, raises $17.5M Series B led by Fertitta Capital
Discussion: Reuters and Action Network
Christine Schmidt / Nieman Lab:
Report details how Tribune Publishing, The Guardian, and Slate got their most engaged readers to contribute by focusing on quality content, podcasts, and more
Discussion: MediaPost
 Earlier Picks: 
Tim Peterson / Digiday:
Winter Podcast Upfronts show that ad buyers are struggling to identify podcasts to advertise against, podcast episodes have a long lifespan, and more
Gene Maddaus / Variety:
Michael Jackson's estate sues HBO for violating a 1992 non-disparagement clause by agreeing to air “Leaving Neverland”, which accuses Jackson of sexual abuse
Janko Roettgers / Variety:
Roku reports Q4 revenue of $275.7M, up 46% YoY and vs. $262.11M est., says it has 27.1M active accounts, up 40% YoY; revenue for 2018 grew 45% to $742.5M