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9:05 PM ET, December 16, 2019

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 Top News: 
CNBC:
Vox Media to end contracts of hundreds of freelancers to comply with CA's new AB5 law, which will forbid non-employees from submitting over 35 articles a year  —  - Hundreds of Vox Media freelancers will lose their jobs in the coming months.  — Vox Media is preparing for a California law …
Emily Bell / The Guardian:
Local news, with its ever-shrinking resources, cannot adequately counter “phantom local news” sites, which are set up to repeat talking points or disinformation  —  Local news is often trusted more than national news but it is highly vulnerable to online disinformation
Davey Alba / New York Times:
Campaign staff and researchers say almost all political campaigns, including presidential ones, lack teams for spotting and pushing back on disinformation  —  Few politicians have teams to spot false statements about them online, or to fight back before it spreads.
Tiffany Hsu / New York Times:
Even as Netflix resists ads, it's finding ways to work with brands, such as partnerships, where no money changes hands, that aim to create interest in its shows  —  Tide Pod shout-outs onscreen.  Flirtatious exchanges with companies on Twitter.  Netflix may not run ads, but it has become a coveted marketing platform.
Discussion: @tiffkhsu
Joe Flint / Wall Street Journal:
Netflix shares detailed overseas subscriber numbers for the first time in a filing, and says 90% of total subscriber growth came from outside the US since 2017  —  Streaming service is disclosing detailed subscriber information by region for operations outside of the U.S. for the first time
Mónica Marie Zorrilla / Adweek:
Stuart Emmrich, who spent ~17 years as The New York Times' Styles editor, named editor of Vogue.com, a newly-created role that reports to Anna Wintour  —  He will oversee digital content and report directly to Anna Wintour  —  Condé Nast said today it has named Stuart Emmrich as Vogue.com's first editor.
Discussion: The Cut
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:
Instagram expands its fact checking efforts by hiding false content behind warnings, except for politicians, and removing it from Explore and hashtag pages  —  Instagram is giving politicians the same free reign to spread misinformation as its parent company Facebook.
Kayleigh Barber / Digiday:
The Try Guys, who left BuzzFeed in 2018, say their media business 2nd Try is now profitable, mainly driven by branded content deals as it plans streaming shows  —  The four-person entertainment group The Try Guys has grown from a video series owned by BuzzFeed to its own independent company that sells merch …
Ursula Perano / Axios:
The Hallmark Channel reverses course and says it will work with Zola.com to reinstate the online wedding registry's ads that show two lesbian brides kissing  —  The Hallmark Channel on Sunday reversed a decision made at the request of a Christian mothers group to pull a commercial showing a same-sex couple kissing, CNN first reported.
Janko Roettgers / Variety:
SF-based startup Bigscreen partners with Paramount to bring Paramount films to VR headsets in 3D; viewers pay $4 to $5 for entry into a virtual movie theater  —  San Francisco-based virtual reality startup Bigscreen has teamed up with Paramount Pictures to bring the theater experience to VR headsets …
Discussion: VentureBeat and Oculus Blog
Patrick Frater / Variety:
 
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 More News: 
James Poniewozik / New York Times:
The success of The Mandalorian's “Baby Yoda” shows it's possible for TV to become as franchise-dominated as film, where Disney makes billions building on old IP
The Guardian:
UK Treasury Minister Rishi Sunak confirms PM Boris Johnson has instructed people to look at whether non-payment of the BBC license fee should be decriminalized
Jim Waterson / The Guardian:
Some BBC staff fear public distrust after election coverage gaffes, as the director general calls on social media to tackle the “sickening” abuse of journalists
 Earlier Picks: 
Alisyn Camerota / Vanity Fair:
CNN's Alisyn Camerota recalls her interactions with Roger Ailes while she was at Fox News, says the screening of Bombshell had a “PTSD-inducing effect” on her
Rebecca Rosenberg / Page Six:
Interview with Harvey Weinstein on what he sees as a legacy of helping women in film; he goes on trial for rape on January 6