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11:35 AM ET, April 17, 2020


 Top News: 
Jason Washing / The Keyword:
Google says it's waiving ad serving fees for news publishers globally on Ad Manager for five months  —  During times of global crisis, people rely on quality journalism to stay informed and safe.  And the ads that appear alongside news coverage help fund the journalists who write breaking news stories …
Meg James / Los Angeles Times:
The LA Times' parent company is closing three community newspapers, the Glendale News-Press, Burbank Leader, and La Cañada Valley Sun, laying off 14 staffers  —  The Los Angeles Times' parent company, California Times, is folding three award-winning community newspapers that serve …
Kevin G. Hall / McClatchy Washington Bureau:
McClatchy's two largest creditors, Chatham Asset Management and Brigade Capital Management, offer to buy the company, setting a price “well in excess” of $300M  —  McClatchy's largest creditors offered to buy the company Thursday, a move that, if approved, would kick off …
Rick Edmonds / Poynter:
Ad sales are down 27% for local TV news stations; National Association of Broadcasters is working with News Media Alliance to lobby for federal stimulus help  —  A trade publication reported Wednesday that ad sales are down 27% for local broadcast news stations  —  Political campaigns are on hiatus.
Benjamin Mullin / Wall Street Journal:
In memo, NPR CEO says NPR is facing a $30M to $45M budget deficit for FY 2021 as sponsorship money, which made up 33% of revenue from 2015 to 2019, dries up  —  National Public Radio sponsorship revenue shrinks in economic environment reeling from the coronavirus crisis
Committee to Protect Journalists:
Report documents Trump administration's harassment of reporters at US borders and prosecution of leakers as Trump targeted media owners and press credibility  —  Attacks on press credibility endanger US democracy and global press freedom  —  The Trump administration has stepped up prosecutions …
Twitter pulls funding for BuzzFeed's AM to DM due to the business impact of COVID-19, forcing BuzzFeed to suspend the show, with staffers' last day on April 28  —  Some right-wing media personalities are encouraging Americans to protest stay-at-home orders, arguing it is time to start to re-open the economy.
Sara Fischer / Axios:
Memo: Vox Media to furlough 9% of staff and cut pay 15%+ for staff making $130K+ from May 1 to July 31, freeze wages and stop 401k match until the end of 2020  —  Vox Media is furloughing 9% of its staff from May 1 through July 31, with health insurance premiums being fully covered, a source familiar with the moves tells Axios.
Discussion: The Wrap, Adweek, Variety and @joepompeo
Marc Tracy / New York Times:
Photojournalists, many of whom are freelancers facing fewer assignments, struggle through the pandemic, using masks, long lenses, and disinfecting routines  —  Assignments have dried up for many photographers.  Others risk going into the fray to capture images of a changed world.
Mary Emily O'Hara / Adweek:
Sources: ViacomCBS laid off “almost all” of the company's contract workers and seven of the eleven people working for Logo and NewNowNext  —  MTV, VH1, CMT, Logo, Comedy Central, TV Land, Showtime and Paramount Pictures all see cuts  —  Key insights:
Discussion: @nselanutella
Brian Steinberg / Variety:
Nielsen: 31M people watched NBC, CBS, and ABC's evening news shows between March 16 and April 7, a 42% rise YoY; PBS' NewsHour says its audience rose 34%  —  Every Friday evening, Steve Hartman takes “CBS Evening News” viewers “On The Road,” in an end-of-show segment that was originally devised …
Tim Ryan / Tim Ryan:
Lawmakers urge Pelosi to include the Protect Local Media Act, which would direct 50% of gov't ads to local media until end of 2020, in the next stimulus bill  —  Washington, DC — Today, Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) was joined by Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15), Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC) …
Discussion: The NewsGuild - CWA
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 More News: 
Scott Alexander / Slate Star Codex:
Early on, when media cited experts saying a pandemic was unlikely, it should have better conveyed the level of uncertainty in those expert opinions
Dan Parks / The Chronicle of Philanthropy:
American Journalism Project, which supports nonprofit local news sites, names Sarabeth Berman as its new CEO, previously head of public affairs at Teach for All
Gene Park / Washington Post:
Jason Schreier, who has covered work conditions in game development, is leaving Kotaku, citing dismay with G/O Media; Gizmodo EIC Kelly Bourdet quit Wednesday
 Earlier Picks: 
David Robb / Deadline:
WGA East files complaint with NLRB, accusing NBCU of union busting by reassigning staffers from unionized Peacock Productions, now defunct, to NBC News Studios
Megan Graham / CNBC:
IAB survey of 200+ US publishers: 98% expect lower 2020 revenue; 88% of news publishers had buyers ask to cancel campaigns and 86% said advertisers paused ads
Discussion: MediaPost and IAB