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3:55 PM ET, August 13, 2019

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 Top News: 
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: CBS and Viacom plan to merge in an all-stock deal, seeking greater scale to compete with rivals and tech companies; Shari Redstone to be board chair  —  Companies seek greater scale to survive in a media landscape dominated by major tech companies and bulked-up rivals
RELATED:
Peter Kafka / Vox:
A combined CBS and Viacom will still not be big enough to compete with Netflix, Apple, and Disney, and will have to become a buyer of smaller companies  —  Shari Redstone controls both Viacom and CBS, and has wanted to merge them for years.  Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Viacom
Jane Lytvynenko / BuzzFeed News:
Detailed post about Epstein's death was on 4Chan 38 minutes before officials announced it; NYC Fire Department investigating if a first responder is responsible  —  The New York City Fire Department is investigating whether a first responder posted about Jeffrey Epstein's death …
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Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
The Twitter-fed misinformation disaster following Epstein's death makes a case for slow news consumption, where readers disengage from breaking news  —  If, by some crazy chance, you wanted to be well-informed these past few days about the sudden death of Jeffrey Epstein, there was a way.
CNN:
Washington Post executive editor responds to Bernie Sanders' suggestion that Bezos influences coverage, calling it a “conspiracy theory”  —  (CNN)The executive editor of The Washington Post hit back at Sen. Bernie Sanders' suggestion that the paper's coverage of the presidential candidate …
Lucinda Southern / Digiday:
Report: UK to give Ofcom new legal powers to penalize video-sharing platforms that fail to establish robust age verification checks and parental controls  —  European politicians have been tightening the screws on U.S. tech platforms on multiple fronts.  Now, a European-wide directive …
Todd Spangler / Variety:
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy openly threatens to fire employees engaged in union organizing, which would violate federal labor laws  —  Dave “El Presidente” Portnoy, founder of media company Barstool Sports, really, really hates unions.  Now he's made explicit threats to fire employees …
RELATED:
Tom Ley / Deadspin:
The editorial staff of The Ringer announces it has formed a union with WGA East and seeks voluntary recognition from management
Axios:
WordPress.com owner Automattic says it will buy Tumblr from Verizon, take on ~200 staffers, and keep the porn ban; source says Automattic paid less than $10M  —  Verizon is set to sell the social network Tumblr to Automattic Inc, the owner of online publishing tool Wordpress.
Sara Fischer / Axios:
Memo: Facebook is funding two new BuzzFeed shows, including a daily news roundup, as a part of its effort to bolster news video on Watch  —  Facebook is funding 2 new BuzzFeed shows as a part of its effort to bolster news video on Watch, according to an internal memo by BuzzFeed editor …
Discussion: Journalism.co.uk
Lily Kuo / The Guardian:
Chinese state media outlets went from near silence and blanket censorship on the protests in Hong Kong to actively pushing propaganda, over the past two months  —  China's media used to ignore the turmoil.  Now the state is waging a campaign that could pave the way for intervention
Discussion: Politico and PEN America
Jessica Davies / Digiday:
Content compensation company Sourcepoint releases a consent-authentication tool that eliminates the need for pubs to use third-party cookies  —  Some publishers, anxious to reduce their reliance on third-party cookies while still meeting data-privacy law requirements, are considering …
 
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 Earlier Picks: 
Maryam Saleh / The Intercept:
Arab “sahafiyat”, women reporters in the Middle East and North Africa, reflect on producing journalism in and for their home countries and for Western audiences
Jeremy Littau / @jeremylittau:
[Thread] A bleak prognosis for the future of journalism education in the US amid demographic changes, declines in student enrollment and newspaper readership
New York Times:
How YouTube radicalized Brazil, diverting users to conspiracy and far-right channels, elevating Bolsonaro's party, and possibly creating a public health crisis