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4:10 AM ET, August 2, 2019

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 Top News: 
Christine Schmidt / Nieman Lab:
Pew: 27% of papers with Sunday circulations of ~50K+ faced layoffs in 2018 vs. 32% in 2017; 14% of digital media sites laid off staff in 2018 vs. 20% in 2017  —  If you work at a U.S. newspaper and didn't have layoffs in the last two years, consider yourself lucky.
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Hank Stuever / Washington Post:
CNN's overproduced, conflict-obsessed debates were full of cable-news alarmism and resembled prime-time game shows and reality TV, rather than democratic debate  —  Lately there's a strange caution in the air about the intellectual pitfalls of comparing American politics to the performing arts — or worse, to showbiz.
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
CNN's first debate, featuring divisive questions, frustratingly short response times, and outsize attention to fringe candidates, was a lost opportunity
Donie O'Sullivan / CNN:
Facebook details its first takedown of inauthentic accounts linked to the Saudi government, alongside a separate takedown of accounts linked to UAE and Egypt  —  Washington (CNN Business)Facebook said Thursday it had found evidence of something cyber security and national security experts …
Ben Paynter / Fast Company:
How The Daily Show covered the first Democratic debate live on social media, making memes and jokes that helped it beat other late-night shows in engagement  —  At 7:30 p.m., roughly a dozen comedy writers and digital producers gathered around a large rectangular wooden table inside …
MIX / The Next Web:
Sensor Tower: YouTube remains world's top-grossing video app, generating $138M in user spending in Q2 2019, up 220% YoY; US users generated ~70% of this revenue  —  Google must be happy.  YouTube is the world's top-grossing app in the photo and video software category for a second quarter in a row.
Marc Tracy / New York Times:
Print generated $25B+ in revenue in 2018; its steady cash flow attracts investors who realize that lowering overhead reduces costs at a faster rate than revenue  —  Hedge funds have found that they are able to wring profits out of an ailing product: the print newspaper.  But for how long?
Sarah Sluis / AdExchanger:
Hearst is building Hearst Audience Select, a self-serve ad platform for small brands to advertise across Hearst properties, to launch in time for Q4  —  Hearst is building a self-serve ad platform so advertisers can overlay their audience data against Hearst's to reach readers across sites like Cosmopolitan …
Eric Eldon / TechCrunch:
Holloway, which publishes in-depth guides about running a startup, raises $4.6M in seed funding from The New York Times, NEA, Lightspeed, and others  —  Founders need to get smart quickly about the many nuanced aspects of building a company, from understanding weird language in a big term sheet to hiring a key software developer.
Mark Bergen / Bloomberg:
YouTube has significantly changed its algorithm to boost what it deems “quality” children's videos following FTC probe into its use of personal data from minors  —  A software update that came in July, without explanation, was designed to promote “quality” children's videos
 
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 More News: 
Andrew Webster / The Verge:
Tyler “Ninja” Blevins, the biggest name in Fortnite and one of Twitch's most popular stars, says he will move to Microsoft's Mixer full-time
Taylor Lorenz / The Atlantic:
Inside “Instabeach”, Instagram's annual invite-only party in Malibu for 500 of its top creators, which has become a who's who of young Hollywood
 Earlier Picks: 
Keith J. Kelly / New York Post:
Nylon EIC Gabrielle Korn is stepping down following the title's acquisition by Bustle; Bustle Digital EIC Emma Rosenblum will be interim editor
Joshua Benton / Nieman Lab:
The LAT's disappointing digital subscriber numbers attest to the importance of subscriber retention, which the paper should invest in like the NYT has
Reuters:
Thomson Reuters Q2: $1.42B in revenue, up 9% YoY; it and Blackstone-affiliated funds have sold Bloomberg rival Refinitiv to the London Stock Exchange for ~$27B