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9:10 PM ET, February 17, 2021


 Top News: 
William Easton / About Facebook:
Ahead of proposed media law, Facebook says it's banning Australians from sharing/viewing news and all users from sharing from and viewing Australian news Pages  —  In response to Australia's proposed new Media Bargaining law, Facebook will restrict publishers and people in Australia from sharing …
Campbell Brown / Facebook:
Facebook News Partnerships VP: Australia's planned law “fails to recognize ... the fundamental nature of the relationship between our platform and publishers”  —  Today we made an incredibly difficult decision to restrict the availability of news on Facebook in Australia.
Reuters and Associated Press:
Facebook says it generated ~5.1B free referrals to Australian publishers worth ~AU$407M last year, as Australia's Media Bargaining law passes the House  —  - Facebook will no longer allow people in Australia to read or share news  — The move is a response to the country's proposed Media Bargaining law
Nicholas McElroy / ABC:
Australian authorities in public health, weather, and other areas say Facebook has removed posts from their feeds following Facebook's news ban
Damien Cave / New York Times:
Australia's concentrated media industry, dominated by News Corp, is aligned with the prime minister and has sought compensation from tech companies for years  —  Pathbreaking legislation showed that even a small nation can get the tech giant to bend.  But the United States seems unlikely to follow.
News Corp:
News Corp announces a multi-year, global partnership with Google to provide content from its news sites “in return for significant payments by Google”  —  Long-term Deal Involves Payment For Premium Content For Google News Showcase;  —  Will Yield Substantial Benefits For Journalism And Society
Brian Flood / Fox News:
Rush Limbaugh has died at the age of 70 after a battle with lung cancer  —  Limbaugh's death, following Stage IV lung cancer diagnosis, announced by family  —  Fox News Flash top headlines for February 17  —  Rush Limbaugh, the monumentally influential media icon who transformed talk radio …
Discussion: @pastpunditry, Washington Post, New York Times, The Wrap, HuffPost, @jessbravin, CNN, NPR, New York Times, Media Matters for America, Slate, @ichotiner, Axios, @drjeffreypjones, The Daily Beast, Insider, The Wrap, @brianros1, @johnjcook, Breitbart, Discourse Blog, New York Post, @tpm, Mediaite, @maxwelltani, CNBC, New York Post, @jessicavalenti, @kayleighmcenany, @froomkin, @glennbeck, @jbouie, @mattoswaltva, @sentomcotton, @joelpollak, @govkristinoem, @bessbell, New York Times, @atrupar, @nowthisnews, 6abc, @brithume, @jeffjarvis, @dylanmatt, Las Vegas Review-Journal, @franklin_graham, @greenfield64, @byyourlogic, @ichotiner, Newser, @froomkin, @rhetoricpj, @judgejeanine, @brianstelter, @titonka, @maureenjohnson, @mattwalshblog, CITIZEN FREE PRESS, @ashleyfeinberg, @diamondandsilk, The National Pulse, @jackmirkinson, @akilahobviously, Power Daily, @melaniatrump, Al Jazeera, @janecoaston, Insider, @bug_gwen, @johnastoehr, @randpaul, @maragay, MediaPost, @dylanbyers, @froomkin, @juddlegum, @rothschildmd, @tomnamako, @letsgomathias, @froomkin, @the_law_boy, @brianstelter, @grynbaum, @nigel_farage, @davidklion, @williamturton, @brianstelter, Washington Post, @heerjeet, @oliverdarcy, @brianstelter, @sharpe222, @allison_burnett, @cwarzel, @drpaulgosar, @mehdirhasan, @bro_pair, Deadspin, @janicedean, @mehdirhasan, @atrupar, @jessicavalenti, @cameron_kasky, Reuters, @pastpunditry, @scrowder, @oliverdarcy, @froomkin, @goldengateblond, @senrickscott, @jparkabc, @yamiche, @christnnitemare and @the_law_boy
ProPublica says Richard Tofel, its founding general manager and president since 2013, will retire from the company when a successor is found  —  ProPublica announced today that Richard Tofel, its founding general manager and president since 2013, will retire from the company when a successor is in place …
Darrell Etherington / TechCrunch:
YouTube says it will expand Shorts, its TikTok rival in beta in India, to the US in coming weeks, announces plans for 2021 including expanding in-video shopping  —  YouTube has a host of big product updates coming this year, and it just detailed a lot of them in a blog post from Chief Product Officer Neal Mohan.
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
Alden's audacious lie that it ensures “sustainability of robust local journalism” is evidence of its unsuitability as a newspaper owner  —  When Alden Global Capital announced Tuesday that it was positioned to buy the Chicago Tribune and several other major newspapers, its statement might have sounded promising.
Robert Channick / Chicago Tribune:
Tribune Publishing has agreed to be acquired by Alden Global Capital in a $630M deal; Tribune will become a privately held company; Alden to sell Baltimore Sun
Christopher Dinsmore / Baltimore Sun:
A nonprofit formed by Stewart Bainum Jr., Sunlight for All Institute, is set to acquire The Baltimore Sun, The Capital Gazette, and several other area outlets
Anne Steele / Wall Street Journal:
iHeartMedia to acquire Triton Digital, which provides audio advertising analytics and measurement services, from Scripps for $230M  —  Deal for audio advertising analytics and measurement services bolsters radio giant's bet on podcasting  —  iHeartMedia Inc. has agreed …
Alex Weprin / Hollywood Reporter:
Tucker Carlson will develop two new projects for Fox Nation streaming service, including a video podcast and “in-depth specials” called Tucker Carlson Originals  —  The anchor will host a video podcast for Fox Nation, and will host a series of “in-depth specials” called Tucker Carlson Originals.
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 More News: 
Brian Steinberg / Variety:
WarnerMedia, known for Cartoon Network and Adult Swim, plans a preschool brand, Cartoonito, and will work to attract more young girls and families as viewers
Discussion: Ad Age
New York Times:
Indian court clears journalist Priya Ramani of defamation after she made sexual harassment accusations against M.J. Akbar, the ex-EIC of Asian Age
Declan Walsh / New York Times:
Freelance journalist Theo Padnos publishes Blindfold, an account of the almost two years he spent captured by jihadi kidnappers in Syria
Cathy Applefeld Olson / Forbes:
20 music streaming services have paid $424M+ in historical unmatched royalties to Mechanical Licensing Collective; Apple paid $163M, Spotify $153M, Amazon $42M
 Earlier Picks: 
David Meyer / Fortune:
TikTok has been hit with a volley of complaints from Europe's consumer protection watchdogs over “misleading” privacy practices and “ambiguous” terms
Discussion: Washington Post