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8:45 AM ET, December 19, 2019

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 Top News: 
Evette Alexander / Knight Foundation:
Knight study of 86M+ tweets: CNN and Yahoo! News attract a politically balanced following; the center left is the most vocal segment discussing political news  —  On Dec. 17, 2019, Knight Foundation released a two-part study analyzing the political dynamics of 86 million tweets.
Raissa Robles / South China Morning Post:
Philippine court finds an ex-mayor and four family members guilty of murder of 57 in the 2009 Maguindanao massacre, which included a large group of journalists  —  Ampatuan political dynasty sought to quash an election challenge by rounding up rivals and journalists, killing them and dumping bodies …
Colin Stutz / Billboard:
Billboard parent company Valence Media to acquire media consumption analytics platform Nielsen Music, which fuels its charts data  —  Billboard parent company Valence Media is acquiring the Nielsen Music insights and product suite that fuel its charts data, it was announced Wednesday (Dec. 18).
Discussion: RAIN News
Bloomberg:
Sources: Fox declined to run ads for Bombshell on its network, though Lions Gate did not attempt to advertise directly on Fox News  —  - Lions Gate sought to promote the film on Fox network  —  Rupert Murdoch's Fox Corp. declined to run advertisements for “Bombshell,” …
Priyanjana Bengani / Columbia Journalism Review:
Investigation finds 450 “pink slime” websites, including 189 local news outlets, in 12 states, distributing algorithmic stories and conservative talking points  —  An increasingly popular tactic challenges conventional wisdom on the spread of electoral disinformation …
Paul Bond / Hollywood Reporter:
Sinclair increases minimum wage for its employees to $15 per hour, affecting ~15% of its workforce, amid introduction of other employee-retaining benefits  —  The move is expected to give raises to about 15 percent of the 9,500 workers at Sinclair, one of the nation's largest TV broadcast companies.
Kayleigh Barber / Digiday:
Snopes to launch a new membership model in early 2020 with access to Snopes editors via a community board; prices start at $30 per year  —  Fact-checking site Snopes is hoping to transition away from its dependence on advertising.  So it is asking its supporters to help the brand grow in 2020.
Andy Serwer / Yahoo News:
Talking Biz News, which tracks business journalists, was quietly sold to Qwoted, a site owned by two PR firms whose clients include newsrooms like Bloomberg  —  Talking Biz News unless you're a business journalist, in which case you're probably familiar.  The site, which was founded and run …
Carly Page / Inquirer:
Incisive Media to shut down The INQUIRER; the site will remain live until end of March, but no new content will be published after Thursday  —  We came, we Inquired, we're off to the pub  —  IT IS WITH A HEAVY HEART we must announce that The INQUIRER has reached end-of-life.
Discussion: @christhedj
Paul Blest / The Outline:
Publishers like Hearst should realize that opposing unions is counterproductive, as it delays the inevitable, costs money, and could ruin morale  —  Hearst is pushing back against its employees' union drive, but it would be advantageous for them to support it.
 
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 More News: 
Independence Media:
Philadelphia's Independence Public Media Foundation announces a second round of grants, totaling $4.3M, to Media Mobilizing Project, Free Press, Chalkbeat, more
Nick Corasaniti / New York Times:
A group formed by 3 former Fox News staffers who sued Fox or Roger Ailes ask presidential candidates to condemn NDAs dealing with workplace environment issues
Sahil Patel / Wall Street Journal:
Finnish social ad-tech company Smartly.io receives a €200M investment from Providence Equity Partners, sources say at a €300M valuation
Committee to Protect Journalists:
Report: 25 journalists were killed in 2019, down from 56 killed in 2018 and the lowest figure since 2002; Syria and Mexico were the deadliest countries
 Earlier Picks: 
BBC:
Investigation finds the Russian network connected to a leak of US-UK trade documents used Quora and the community section of BuzzFeed to spread misinformation
Elizabeth Jensen / NPR:
On-air source diversity data for NPR for FY 2018 shows 83% of sources were white, up from 73% in FY 2015, and 33% were female
Jonathan Shieber / TechCrunch:
Ryff, whose tech identifies objects in a TV or movie scene and dynamically inserts branded products based on viewers' profiles, raises $5M