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8:10 AM ET, July 2, 2019


 Top News: 
Andrew Flanagan / NPR:
Big Machine Label Group, Taylor Swift's old label, was sold to a company owned by the manager of Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande; source: deal valued at $300M+  —  The country-pop record company Big Machine Label Group, one of the most successful independent labels in the country …
Sam Stein / The Daily Beast:
Progressive news site ThinkProgress, launched 14 years ago, is put up for sale by the Center for American Progress as it faces falling ad revenue and donations  —  News site launched during the Bush years is running millions of dollars short.  Its parent think tank says it will consider the editorial leanings of prospective owners.
Todd Spangler / Variety:
NBC News Now hires former Fox and WSJ reporter Alison Morris as its first full-time anchor, after launching the free streaming service in May  —  NBC News Now, five weeks after the free streaming service's launch, has a full-time anchor: Alison Morris, who most recently was with Fox Corp.'s Fox 5 in New York.
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Spotify ends its direct music upload beta program for artists after debuting it last year, saying it would rather focus on features unique to the platform  —  Spotify is shutting down a program that allowed indie artists to upload their own music to the streaming service, the company announced today.
Erik Hayden / Hollywood Reporter:
Simon and Schuster to publish a book by CNN's Brian Stelter on the relationship between Trump and Fox News, in 2020  —  The ‘Reliable Sources’ anchor will pen an untitled book looking at the network's relationship with the president, set to publish in 2020.
Discussion: The Hill
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Epidemic Sound, a search engine for video producers looking to license music for soundtracks, raises $20M at a reported $370M valuation  —  The rise of streamed video has seen the market for licensing streamed music boom in the last few years, with not only consumers using video as a medium …
Brooks Barnes / New York Times:
Oscars Academy invites 842 new members, of which 50% are women and 29% are minorities; if all accept, composition will be 32% female and remain 16% POC  —  LOS ANGELES — Racing to make good on a 2016 pledge to double female and minority membership by the end of next year …
Discussion: CNN, Vanity Fair and The Guardian
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Sony's PlayStation Vue raises prices by $5/month for all tiers, bringing the cheapest plan to $50/month, following YouTube TV, which raised prices in April  —  Sony's PlayStation Vue live TV streaming service is joining its rivals with the roll out another price increase.
Bain Capital is in exclusive talks to buy a majority stake in ad giant WPP's Kantar unit in a deal valuing Kantar at about $4B, including debt  —  - Negotiations value Kantar research unit at about $4 billion  — Advertising giant confirms talks reported by Bloomberg earlier
Samantha Sunne / Poynter:
Stephania Taladrid / Columbia Journalism Review:
Profile of Marcela Turati, a Mexican reporter covering the effects of the drug war and a press freedom advocate in a country whose institutions don't defend it  —  In Mexico, a journalist learns to cope with the drug war's horror and heartbreak  —  Marcela Turati drove to Villa Ahumada …
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 More News: 
Sara Jerde / Adweek:
Hearst enters the streaming market with All Out Studio, a fitness app available on Apple TV and mobile on July 11, priced at $100/year or $15/month
 Earlier Picks: 
Hannah Knowles / Washington Post:
New WH press secretary Stephanie Grisham was bruised in a scuffle with N. Korean security while helping US media gain access to Trump's meeting with Kim Jong Un