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5:25 PM ET, June 24, 2021


 Top News: 
Jessica Bursztynsky / CNBC:
BuzzFeed announces plans to go public via SPAC merger, targeting a $1.5B valuation, and will acquire digital publisher Complex Networks for $300M  —  BuzzFeed, a 15-year-old digital media company, announced Thursday it plans to go public via a merger with a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company.
Stephen Shankland / CNET:
Google will delay plans to block third-party cookies from early 2022 to late 2023, to find ways to protect privacy without hurting ad-dependent publishers  —  It takes time to fix privacy problems without hurting ad-dependent websites, the search giant says.
Ashley Carman / The Verge:
Amazon acquires Art19, a major podcast hosting and monetization platform, for an undisclosed sum  —  Art19 goes to Amazon Music  —  Amazon Music is getting more serious about its podcast endeavors.  Today, the company announced that it's acquiring Art19, a major podcast hosting and monetization platform for an undisclosed sum.
Brian Steinberg / Variety:
Open AP and AT&T's Xandr, once seen as staunch rivals, strike a strategic data alliance that would let Xandr clients use Open AP's defined audience segments  —  Open AP and AT&T's Xandr were once seen as staunch rivals.  Indeed, WarnerMedia, one of Open AP's founders …
Mark Sweney / The Guardian:
UK government bans junk food advertising online and before 9pm on TV from 2023, which could cost broadcasters more than £200M annually in revenue  —  Prohibition of adverts for products high in fat, salt and sugar could cost broadcasters more than £200m annually in revenue
Lucas Shaw / Bloomberg:
Snap and Universal Music Group strike a licensing deal that lets users share songs in messages and posts; financial terms were not disclosed  —  - Move is latest tie-up between music companies and social media  — Snap wants to become key place for artists to promote songs
Megan Graham / CNBC:
Innovid, an ad tech company focused on connected television, says it is going public via SPAC merger at an implied valuation of around $1.3B  —  - Innovid, a 14-year-old ad tech company focused on connected television, plans to go public via a merger with a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company.
Discussion: @megancgraham, Ad Age and AdExchanger
Jim Waterson / The Guardian:
Murdoch asks UK govt to abolish legal restraints on his interference in the editorial independence of the Times and Sunday Times, paving the way for a merger  —  News UK asks government to scrap legal curbs at Times and Sunday Times, paving way for full-blown merger
Paul Sawers / VentureBeat:
JW Player, a video streaming and analytics service used by major companies like Viacom, raises $100M Series E from LLR Partners  —  Where does your enterprise stand on the AI adoption curve?  Take our AI survey to find out.  —  JW Player, a video streaming and analytics platform …
Bob Papper / RTDNA:
Research: POC make up 27.7% of local TV news workforce in the US; all local TV newsrooms have women on the news team; 85% of radio news workforce is white  —  Graphics credits: Chandler Claire Dewgard / Syracuse University  —  This is the fifth and final installment of this year's RTDNA/Newhouse School at Syracuse University Survey.
Discussion: @deborahabc17 and @spj_tweets
Rick Edmonds / Poynter:
Reuters Institute report: US ranks last among 46 countries for trust in media, with just 29% saying they trust the news; Finland has the highest trust at 65%  —  Just 29% of people surveyed in the U.S. said they trust the news, compared to 45% in Canada and 54% in Brazil.
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 More News: 
Richard Lawler / The Verge:
Microsoft adds integrations with local news creators and authors to highlight local sources and support people with donations in Windows 11
Discussion: ScreenRant and XDA Developers
Sara Guaglione / Digiday:
Nielsen: those who listen to a podcast one to three times per month now make up nearly half of all listeners; comedy and news are the biggest podcast genres
A look at venture units at ITV and Channel 4 that trade TV ads for startup equity; Channel 4 launched its fund in 2015, holding and exiting a Pinterest stake
Katie Deighton / Wall Street Journal:
Airlines are retiring their in-flight magazines globally, citing digital entertainment and claiming removing the heavy magazines reduces carbon emissions
EJ Dickson / Rolling Stone:
Profile of David Dobrik, a YouTuber notorious for goofy pranks who earned an estimated $15.5M in 2020, and is now under fire for turning trauma into content
 Earlier Picks: 
New York Times:
Apple Daily says it will cease operations, with online and print editions ending today, after Chinese police froze its accounts and arrested executives