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10:55 PM ET, May 17, 2021


 Top News: 
Brian Stelter / CNN:
AT&T to spin off WarnerMedia and combine it with Discovery in a $43B deal; the new company will be run by Discovery CEO David Zaslav  —  New York (CNN Business)The streaming TV race is about to get even more competitive.  —  On Monday morning AT&T (T) and Discovery, Inc. (DISCA) …
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Brooks Barnes / New York Times:
Sources: Jason Kilar is negotiating his departure as CEO of WarnerMedia, after being kept in the dark about the deal with Discovery until recent days  —  Jason Kilar has hired a legal team to negotiate his departure as chief executive of WarnerMedia, according to two people briefed on the matter.
Hollywood Reporter:
John Stankey and David Zaslav discuss their vision for the WarnerMedia deal, saying the company will have a content spend that exceeds most competitors at $20B  —  AT&T chief John Stankey and Zaslav, who will lead the new venture, also addressed the status of WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar and the future of CNN.
The Information:
Source: Amazon is in talks to acquire MGM for between $7B and $10B, in what would be its biggest move to expand into entertainment  —  Amazon is in discussions to acquire MGM, said a person familiar with the situation, in what would be the ecommerce giant's biggest move yet to expand in entertainment.
Tyler Falk / Current:
After an outside investigation, New York Public Radio has fired On the Media host Bob Garfield for violating its anti-bullying policy  —  New York Public Radio has fired On the Media host Bob Garfield for violating its anti-bullying policy, the organization said Monday.
Zack Zwiezen / Kotaku:
In a letter to management, 66 IGN staffers demand a post listing Palestinian charities be reinstated after its removal, saying editorial integrity was subverted  —  Today, the IGN editorial staff published an open letter decrying Sunday's removal of an IGN article and its associated tweet …
Zack Zwiezen / Kotaku:
After publishing and removing an article listing Palestinian charities, IGN says it didn't mean to make it seem “we were politically aligned with one side”
Jeremy Fuster / The Wrap:
Former Hollywood Reporter editor Matthew Belloni has become a founding member of a new media company that has raised $7M and aims to launch this summer  —  Matthew Belloni, former Editorial Director at The Hollywood Reporter, has joined as a founding partner for a new media company that will cover politics …
Apple says it will bring lossless audio to all Apple Music subscribers at no added cost and will support Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos, available from June  —  The next generation of sound on Apple Music is coming to subscribers June 2021 at no additional cost
Micah Singleton / Billboard:
Amazon Music HD is now available to Amazon Music Unlimited subscribers for free, effectively cutting the Hi-Fi service's price from $14.99 to $9.99 per month
Alexandra Bruell / Wall Street Journal:
NBCUniversal is acting as a power broker between stars and advertisers as part of its upfronts, hoping its pull with talent will help it strike bigger deals  —  Comcast unit is pitching broad partnerships with stars during this year's TV-ad-buying ritual, hoping its pull with talent helps it strike bigger deals
Washington Post:
Researchers detail a sprawling disinformation network in the US, including media websites such as GTV, that's pushing falsehoods about COVID-19 and the election  —  Guo Wengui, living in self-exile in New York City, is at the center of a digital web pushing election and covid falsehoods, according to Graphika research
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 Featured Newsletter: 
75% of large subscription publishers offer discounted trials  —  The majority of large publishers with digital subscription products are currently offering discounted trials to help drive new subscriber acquisition, according to Toolkits research.
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 More News: 
Charlotte Tobitt / Press Gazette:
British GQ editor Dylan Jones departs after 22 years in the role; GQ to be led globally by American GQ editor Will Welch, as Conde Nast merges editorial teams
Discussion: MediaPost
 Earlier Picks: 
Jay Peters / The Verge:
Twitch says it is switching to localized subscription prices in some non-US markets, which will often be lower, starting with Turkey and Mexico on May 20
Todd Spangler / Variety:
DVD rental and streaming company Redbox is going public via SPAC in a deal that values the combined company at $693M; Redbox had earnings of $114M in 2020
Discussion: The Wrap and The Verge
Investors and analysts including Warren Buffett weigh in on “stupid” stock swings affecting ViacomCBS, Discovery, and AMC Entertainment, plus problematic SPACs
The Daily Beast:
Unlike many in the media, MSNBC's Mehdi Hasan and Ayman Mohyeldin are granting airtime to Palestinians instead of heavily relying on Israeli government accounts