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4:00 PM ET, May 24, 2021


 Top News: 
New York Times:
Nexta Telegram channel founder Roman Protasevich arrested as Belarus, under orders from Lukashenko, sends fighter jet and forces Ryanair flight to land in Minsk  —  The dissident, Roman Protasevich, co-founded a Telegram channel that is a popular opposition outlet in Belarus.
Discussion: @ryanairpress, Nieman Lab, @lizsly, @gitanasnauseda, @maxseddon, New York Times, @franakviacorka, @franakviacorka, @tsihanouskaya, @vonderleyen, Financial Times, The Guardian, DW.COM, Poynter, The Atlantic, @thomasvlinge, New York Times, @primeministergr, @ingridasimonyte, @krisjaniskarins, @cdeloire, @sarahemclaugh, @tadeuszgiczan, Washington Post, @biannagolodryga, @tcwittes, @anneapplebaum, Bloomberg, @briankarem, United States Senate Committee …, @kenroth, @jimsciutto, Insider, United States Department …, CNN, DW.COM, New York Post, @lionelbarber, TechNadu, @anthony, Glenn Greenwald, Tugboat for Twitter, @billbrowder, @kenroth, The Morning Dispatch, @sevaut, Fox News, Fast Company, @billbrowder, @matinastevis, Politico, The Daily Beast, @maxseddon, @agnescallamard, Foreign Policy, @chrismurphyct, @emilybell, @jeffjarvis, @guyverhofstadt, @nytgraphics, The Week, @mikebutcher, @reedbrody, @christopherjm, @simoncoveney, @ruskin147, @iyervval, @g_boccaletti, @brianklaas, @iyad_elbaghdadi, @juliaangwin, @stavridisj, @bopanc, @antontroian, @lotteleicht1, @carlzimmer, @thinink, @raydubicki, @arjunbasu, @cbcchrisbrown, @edgarsrinkevics, @flyingwithsara, @mathieuvonrohr, @mollyjongfast, @denismacshane, @charlesarthur, @nytimesworld, @ivohdaalder, @tashecon, @linkeviciusl, @lisanandy, @billbrowder, @vladdavidzon, @tadeuszgiczan, @lugaricano, @bryvkin, @radeksikorski, @josepborrellf, @glandsbergis, @josepborrellf, @ndkirschmann, @avindman, @davidcoltart, @evanchill, @sashachavkin, @kshahrooz, @wiczipedia, @donie, @erinburnett, @jesselynradack, @biannagolodryga, @phastidio, @maxseddon, @j_bertolotti, @ncweaver, @davmicrot, @michaeldweiss, @cjcmichel, @xsovietnews, @b_nishanov, @christopherjm, @repmeijer, @maxseddon, @dethveggie, @mitchprothero, @jamesrbuk, @christopherjm, @biannagolodryga, @danielrhamilton, @bobrae48, @andrewkimmel, @vloracitaku, @sovietsergey, Lucian Truscott Newsletter, @nycsouthpaw, @marcburleigh, @jason_kint, @henryjfoy, @asluhn, @tadeuszgiczan, Reuters, Slate, Bloomberg, The Guardian, APOLLO NETWORK Newsletter, The Republican Standard, BBC, ABC News, The Sun, Voice of America, TASS,, euronews, Radio Free Europe/Radio … and CNN
Lindsey Ellefson / The Wrap:
Over 100 AP staff sign a letter saying they “strongly disapprove” with how Emily Wilder's firing was handled and call on AP to update social media policies  —  Over 100 Associated Press employees signed a letter to management Monday saying they “strongly disapprove” …
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Amazon is nearing a deal to buy MGM Holdings for almost $9B, which could be announced as early as this week  —  Deal for the ‘Rocky’ and ‘James Bond’ studio would mark tech company's second largest-ever acquisition  — Inc. is nearing a deal to buy the Hollywood studio MGM Holdings …
Ben Smith / New York Times:
Tension is rising at WNYC amid HR complaints about bullying and a formal complaint to the NLRB about an alleged campaign by the EIC against her internal critics  —  In public radio, there is either an epidemic of bullying or an epidemic of whining, depending on whom you ask.
New York Times:
Sources: in October 2016, shortly before the AT&T-Time Warner acquisition, Disney's Bob Iger called Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes about a possible deal  —  What if Time Warner had gotten a fateful phone call earlier in 2016?  —  What could have been  —  After its $100 billion deal …
Matthew Dessem / Slate:
In a Last Week Tonight episode about sponsored content, John Oliver tricked three local US TV stations into airing a promo for a bogus “sexual wellness blanket”  —  The single greatest thing about Last Week Tonight has always been John Oliver's willingness to spend HBO's money …
The Information:
Sources: Bleacher Report revenue fell 15% to $140M in '20; Jason Kilar met with Bleacher Report execs to explore a role for it in HBO Max but nothing came of it  —  Shortly after Jason Kilar took over WarnerMedia a year ago, he met with executives at Bleacher Report to discuss the future …
Discussion: @sizpatel
Andi Ortiz / The Wrap:
Former Trump spokesman Jason Miller is ordered to pay Gizmodo Media Group $42K to cover legal fees after a second attempt at suing Gizmodo  —  Jason Miller, a spokesperson for former President Donald Trump, has been ordered by a federal judge to pay Gizmodo Media Group almost $42,000 …
BBC will review its editorial practices and Martin Bashir's rehiring after a report found it covered up Bashir's “deceitful behaviour” to get a Diana interview  —  The BBC is to review its editorial practices and investigate how journalist Martin Bashir was rehired …
Pew Research Center:
Study: 33% of US papers with Sunday circulations of 50K+ faced layoffs in 2020, vs. 24% in 2019; 18% of the most visited digital-native news sites faced layoffs  —  Staff layoffs continued to pummel the beleaguered U.S. newspaper industry in 2020.  A third of papers with an average Sunday circulation …
Charlotte Tobitt / Press Gazette:
UK's Reach says it will pay back up to £4M to employees who took a pay cut at the start of the pandemic, after settling with some staff  —  Reach has agreed to pay back up to £4m to employees who took pay cuts at the start of the Covid-19 crisis between April and June last year.
Full-time employment in local TV news increased 1.8% YoY to 28,000 in 2020, beating the previous high in 2009  —  This is the third installment of this year's RTDNA/Newhouse School at Syracuse University Survey.  Dig deeper into the data here and stay tuned for more about newsroom innovation and diversity.
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 More News: 
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Sensor Tower makes its first acquisition with deal for market intelligence company, Pathmatics, and gets a growth investment from Riverwood Capital
David McCabe / New York Times:
A new Florida law regulates how Twitter, YouTube, and others moderate speech, with fines for banning candidates; the law exempts companies that own theme parks
Jason Gewirtz / CNBC:
CNBC is selling an NFT of a video of Mark Haines calling a bottom in the stock market on March 10, 2009, to honor the anchor on 10th anniversary of his death
Chance Miller / 9to5Mac:
Apple releases iOS 14.6 with Podcasts Subscriptions, which lets creators offer subscriptions with bonus content such as ad-free and subscriber-only episodes
Alex Cox / The Keyword:
Google debuts News Showcase for the web on desktop, with enhanced Google News story panels from partner outlets, in the eight countries Showcase is available
 Earlier Picks: 
Zheping Huang / Bloomberg:
Kuaishou, ByteDance's main rival, reports Q1 revenue of $2.65B, up 37% YoY, and a net loss of $8.9B, as it delved deeper into online commerce and advertising
Brian Morrissey / The Rebooting:
A look at the underbelly of subscriptions and direct-to-consumer models, which has publishers using “dark patterns” to avoid losing subscribers
Jennifer Bendery / HuffPost:
CNN has terminated its contract with senior political commentator Rick Santorum after his racist remarks about Native Americans at an event last month