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7:20 PM ET, August 14, 2020


 Top News: 
Financial Times:
As ViacomCBS expands CBS All Access with programming from Viacom and Paramount, it is considering rebranding the streaming service to Paramount+  —  ‘Paramount+’ tops shortlist as battle with Disney moves centre stage in attempt to lift shares  —  ViacomCBS is considering a plan to rebrand …
ViacomCBS shares rose as much as 5.8% on Friday following a researcher's report that an activist investor may be gathering a significant stake  —  - Credit Suisse trades hint that shareholder is amassing stake  — But any activist would have to win over Shari Redstone
Discussion: @scottporch
Victoria Song / Gizmodo:
The death of Bon Appétit shows why media companies, which have no idea what makes videos work, failed with their half-baked plans to pivot to video  —  There are a zillion reasons why I have been mourning the Bon Appétit Test Kitchen.  The one that hurts most is that the slow …
Sara Fischer / Axios:
Facing saturation and stiff competition in the US, media giants including Fox News and ViacomCBS are planning to launch new streaming services internationally  —  Facing saturation and stiff competition in the U.S., media giants are planning to launch new streaming services internationally to accrue more subscribers.
Discussion: MediaPost
Kristen Hare / Poynter:
Santa Cruz Local, a startup that focuses on county-level public policy reporting, has grown amid the pandemic to 500 paying members and 3,800 newsletter subs  —  Santa Cruz Local nearly doubled paying members since the coronavirus pandemic … “Hey everyone.
Press Gazette:
More than 2,000 jobs at UK-based news organizations have been cut during the COVID-19 crisis so far, with a large proportion of editorial staff affected  —  More than 2,000 jobs at UK-based news organisations have been put at risk during the Covid-19 crisis so far, with more expected to follow.
BuzzFeed News:
Facebook's employees and third-party fact-checkers say Facebook has sometimes overruled decisions on divisive content with little transparency  —  On May 8, Prager University, a nonprofit conservative media outlet, published a video on Facebook that incorrectly claimed “there is no evidence …
Elaine Low / Variety:
Len Amato, president of HBO Films, Miniseries, and Cinemax, is leaving, as Cinemax works on phasing out original programming and HBO focuses on acquired content  —  After 13 years at the premium cabler, president of HBO Films, Miniseries and Cinemax Len Amato is departing.
Discussion: The Wrap and Hollywood Reporter
Spencer Hsu / Washington Post:
USAGM removed seven top execs on Wednesday after suspending their security clearances, citing security concerns over hiring of foreign workers  —  Members of Congress on Thursday condemned a leadership purge at the parent agency of Voice of America, escalating criticism that a new chief executive appointed …
Discussion: @karenkornbluh and @vivian
Daniel Lippman / Politico:
USAGM has hired Frank Wuco, a former talk radio host who has called Obama a Kenyan and Nancy Pelosi a Botox-using Nazi, among other incendiary statements
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 More News: 
Press Gazette:
UK court rules that Reach must pay damages of £49,000 to a school teacher following defamatory articles in The Sunday Mirror, Mirror Online, and Kent Live
Patrick Frater / Variety:
Baidu's video streaming service iQIYI says it is being probed by SEC, after a report in April accused it of inflating its 2019 revenue by around $1.13B
Aaron Mak / Slate:
Google's Ad Exchange is demonetizing pages that merely mention issues of race and LGBTQ rights, classifying them as “dangerous or derogatory content”
 Earlier Picks: 
Sources at publications partnering with Apple News+ say Apple did not tell them about changes that force News+ users into its app instead of to publisher sites
Tommy Christopher / Mediaite:
Newsweek stands by an op-ed by a former Kamala Harris opponent that used arcane arguments to question Harris' eligibility for VP
Frank Pallotta / CNN:
AMC will reopen more than 100 theaters on August 20 and expects to open two-thirds of its 600+ US theaters by September 3, when Tenet comes out
Mark Gurman / Bloomberg:
Sources: Apple to launch “Apple One”, tiered subscription bundles, which will include Music, TV+, News+, and a new virtual fitness service, as early as October