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7:55 AM ET, March 23, 2021


 Top News: 
Laura Hazard Owen / Nieman Lab:
Study of subscriber retention techniques at 526 news organizations across the US: just 41% “make it easy” for subscribers to cancel their subscriptions online  —  Bad news for people who hate using the phone: Just 41% of U.S. news publishers “make it easy” for subscribers to cancel …
John Koblin / New York Times:
Nielsen: The Ellen DeGeneres Show lost more than a million viewers, a decline of 43%, following Ellen's on-air apology in September  —  “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” a sturdy daytime hit, has had a steep ratings decline since the host addressed accusations by former staff members that led to firings and an internal investigation.
Paul Farhi / Washington Post:
CNN lost 45% of prime-time audience in the past 5 weeks and WaPo unique visitors fell 26% from Jan. to Feb., as outlets lose audience gained during Trump years  —  Of all Donald Trump's prophecies and predictions — that Mexico would pay for a border wall, that coronavirus would spontaneously disappear …
Ben Thompson / Stratechery:
The controversies around Substack miss the point that it is just a tool for sovereign writers who are in control as they are paid directly by subscribers  —  There has been a bit of controversy around Substack over the last week; I'm not going to get into the specifics of various accusations …
Jem Aswad / Variety:
Tencent Music and Warner Music to expand licensing agreement with a joint venture record label in China; Tencent became a 20% owner of Universal Music last year  —  Tencent Music Entertainment Group, part of the massive China-based Tencent media company, and Warner Music have announced …
Oliver Darcy / CNN:
Eric Spinato, the head booker and senior story editor for the Fox Business Network who worked primarily with Maria Bartiromo, dies from the coronavirus  —  New York (CNN Business)Eric Spinato, the head booker and senior story editor for the Fox Business Network, died over the weekend, the network said Monday.
Tom Jones / Poynter:
Interview with Katie Couric on hosting Jeopardy!, her upcoming memoir, and building a company to produce a newsletter, a podcast, and other original journalism  —  She has a daily newsletter.  She has a podcast.  She produces original journalism on her website.  Is there anything Katie Couric isn't doing?
Lucy Sherriff / Future Human:
Researchers translating text from Hawaii's 100+ forgotten native-language newspapers are discovering a treasure trove of historical climate data  —  Researchers translating the papers uncovered accounts of extreme weather that struck the islands in the past
Kate Kaye / Digiday:
As publishers adopt single ID systems to replace third-party cookies, they are falling short in asking for users' consent and transparency about data use  —  Publishers, advertisers and ad tech companies are rallying around identity tech such as Unified ID 2., a system developed …
Discussion: Insider
Julia La Roche / Yahoo Finance:
TIME Magazine to auction three covers as NFTs including one asking “Is Fiat Dead?” and plans to add a “pay by crypto” option for its subscribers within 30 days  —  TIME Magazine plans to lean into surging demand for digital currency and art, currently two of the hottest trends in the global economy.
Marcia Brown / American Prospect:
Activists say CNN aired a clip about a border crossing despite warnings it may have been staged, as outlets compete to frame the border situation as a “crisis”  —  An unusual video has been flagged by activists as deliberately manufactured to present a story of a border crisis …
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 More News: 
Ben Smith / New York Times:
Interview with author Ibram Kendi, who is working with The Boston Globe on The Emancipator, an online publication with a seven-figure budget to cover racism
 Earlier Picks: 
Jay Rosen / PressThink:
A look at instances where journalistic practices have improved in response to the Trump years, such as providing better context in explaining officials' actions
Elizabeth A. Harris / New York Times:
Emotional viral TikTok videos are boosting book sales, like The Song of Achilles, which saw its sales jump about 9x after some book reading videos took off