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5:40 PM ET, February 8, 2021

Mediagazer

 Top News: 
Kurt Wagner / Bloomberg:
Sources: Twitter is building subscription products to ease its dependence on ads, including “tipping” for exclusive content and charging for TweetDeck  —  - Internal groups are researching options users might pay for  — Social network says ‘revenue durability’ is now top priority
Sara Fischer / Axios:
Automattic's enterprise-focused WordPress VIP says it is acquiring content analytics service Parse.ly  —  WordPress VIP (WPVIP), the enterprise arm of WordPress.com, is acquiring Parse.ly, a content analytics platform that's used by thousands of digital publishers.
Washington Post:
WaPo says readership of its tech coverage grew 40% in 2020 and it will add eight positions, based at its HQ and SF, growing its tech team to 27  —  Added roles will be based in San Francisco and The Post's headquarters  —  The Washington Post today announced a significant expansion of its technology team …
Hannah Murphy / Financial Times:
Sources: TikTok has briefed advertisers on new e-commerce tools launching in 2021, including letting popular users add links and earn commission  —  Viral video app set to unveil a suite of new online shopping tools  —  TikTok is planning an aggressive expansion into ecommerce in the US …
Jem Aswad / Variety:
Universal Music Group unveils a global agreement with TikTok, days after pulling its music catalog from TikTok-rival Triller  —  Via the agreement, which covers recorded music from artists at UMG's labels and songwriters with Universal Music Publishing Group, “TikTok users will be more empowered …
Robert Feder:
Nexstar confirms Bill Shine is a consultant for NewsNation; sources: NewsNation news director quit because of interference by Shine and others in news decisions  —  After two decades as a senior executive at Fox News and a protégé of chairman and CEO Roger Ailes …
Kayleigh Barber / Digiday:
Bustle Digital Group says it has 2M total email subscribers across 14 newsletters and plans to have 10M by the end of 2021  —  Right now the conversations around newsletters are revolving around which journalist recently joined Substack and which hotshot business newsletter was recently acquired.
Discussion: @thekenyeung and @bradesposito
Financial Times:
China charges Cheng Lei, an Australian journalist who worked for a Chinese state TV channel, with leaking state secrets, six months after she was first detained  —  Cheng Lei worked for Chinese state television and had been held in secret for six months  —  Beijing has charged …
Charlotte Tobitt / Press Gazette:
Murdoch's News UK TV will be streamed live and on-demand on multiple streaming platforms rather than over the airwaves when it launches in the spring  —  News UK has revealed it will launch a nightly entertainment show this spring after months of speculation about its plans to expand into TV.
Discussion: @pressgazette
Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Sources: Mark Cuban is co-founding Fireside, a podcast app where hosts can talk to fans live and monetize their conversations, with plans to launch this year  —  Fireside is launching this year  —  Mark Cuban is getting in on the audio and podcasting hype.
Isaac Chotiner / New Yorker:
Interview with Marty Baron on some of the controversies during his tenure at WaPo, how the paper covered Bezos, and what he wanted to achieve in Washington DC  —  The soon-to-retire executive editor defends the idea of journalistic objectivity.  “It's not neutrality, it's not both-sides-ism, it's not so-called balance,” he says.
 
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 More News: 
openDemocracy:
Editors of major UK papers, including Times, Guardian, and FT, sign a letter calling on UK to probe claims that a government FOI unit blacklisted journalists
Elsa Keslassy / Variety:
Pluto TV launches in France with 40 original channels, making it the first free ad-supported TV streaming service to launch in the country
Discussion: Cord Cutters News
Chris Roush / Talking Biz News:
Coindesk TV launches on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter with Joanne Po, formerly managing director of Fox News Digital, as executive producer
Discussion: Business Wire
 Earlier Picks: 
Travis Clark / Insider:
CinemaScore, which has conducted opening-night movie surveys using poll workers in the US for studios, is hoping to expand to serving streamers like Netflix
Ben Smith / New York Times:
Hachette Book Group last month fired Kate Hartson, one of the few mainstream editors who published Trump die-hards like Trump Jr., Lewandowski, and Pirro
Celine Castronuovo / The Hill:
Twitter permanently suspends the account of Jim Hoft, founder and EIC of far-right news website Gateway Pundit, for violations of its “civic integrity policy”
Michael M. Grynbaum / New York Times:
Lawsuits from two election tech companies are now reining in right-wing media misinformation, after years of ad boycotts, public pressure campaigns, and outrage
Gordon Russell / The Advocate:
Louisiana AG Jeff Landry sues a reporter for The Advocate and The Times-Picayune over a public-records request she filed