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2:30 PM ET, July 12, 2021


 Top News: 
Ben Smith / New York Times:
Five bright spots for US journalism: from strong nonprofit reporting on the NRA to ventures like climate-focused Bloomberg Green and texting-based Outlier Media  —  A look at some of the ventures that have sprung up, fueled by a new sense of mission in American journalism and by the sheer quantities of money available.
Jeremy Fuster / The Wrap:
Disney says Marvel's Black Widow has earned $60M+ on opening weekend via its Premier Access program, which lets Disney+ subscribers rent the movie for $30  —  Opening weekend estimates for Marvel Studios' “Black Widow” took a hit after Saturday grosses were lower than expected …
Scott Mendelson / Forbes:
Black Widow's $60M opening weekend on Disney+, in addition to the $158M theatrical debut, shows how theaters and streamers can coexist, even for blockbusters
Discussion: Observer
Tiffany Hsu / New York Times:
How Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham, and other Fox News hosts helped elevate vaccine skepticism, once relegated to the fringes, to the conservative mainstream  —  Months after Rupert Murdoch got a Covid-19 dose, one of his network's stars, Tucker Carlson, called a Biden vaccination proposal “the greatest scandal in my lifetime.”
Sources: Tucker Carlson is furious with Fox News executives and its PR team for not defending his evidence-free claims that NSA spied on him  —  (CNN Business)Tucker Carlson is furious with Fox News executives for not vigorously defending him amid his evidence-free claims …
Kate Kaye / Digiday:
Facebook confirms it is delaying a brand safety audit by industry body MRC, after publicly committing to the audit a year ago during an ad boycott  —  Facebook's brand safety audit is postponed.  —  The company promised the Media Rating Council, the industry's decades-old measurement verification body …
Pei Li / Reuters:
Sources: China to order Tencent Music to give up exclusive rights to music labels, and fine ~$77K for lapses in reporting the acquisitions of two streaming apps  —  China's antitrust regulator is set to order the music streaming arm of Tencent Holdings Ltd (0700.HK) to give up exclusive rights …
Associated Press:
News Media Alliance again criticizes Louis DeJoy's plans to raise periodical postal rates by 8%+ on Aug. 29, saying the move will hurt newspapers and the public  —  The U.S. Postal Service's plan to raise mailing rates could present one more damaging blow to community newspapers already reeling …
Sara Fischer / Axios:
Laura McGann and Mark Bauman raise $10M Series A for a new DC-based media company focusing on policy, politics, tech, and more; McGann will be editorial lead  —  Laura McGann, former politics editor of and Politico, and Mark Bauman, previously with the Smithsonian …
Charlotte Tobitt / Press Gazette:
Stream Publishing will launch a dedicated UK edition of Rolling Stone, over 50 years after an attempt by Mick Jagger dissolved in just a few months  —  Rolling Stone is getting a dedicated UK edition more than 50 years after the first attempt sponsored by Mick Jagger dissolved in just a few months.
Discussion: @attitudemag
Jim Waterson / The Guardian:
Barb: Euro 2020 final attracts an estimated 31M TV audience across both BBC and ITV, one of the most-watched broadcasts in British TV history  —  Coverage of England v Italy match watched by more viewers than any programme since 1997 Diana funeral  —  England's Euro 2020 final defeat …
Discussion: @jimwaterson and Variety
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 More News: 
Katherine Huggins / Mediaite:
During Trump's CPAC Speech on Sunday, Fox News added a disclaimer that “voting system companies have denied the various allegations made by President Trump”
Charlotte Tobitt / Press Gazette:
Public Interest News Foundation survey finds 56 of UK's independent publishers earned a combined revenue of less than £5.4m in 2020 despite a reach of 10.1M/mo
 Earlier Picks: 
Julia Ioffe / Tomorrow Will Be Worse:
White House reporters reflect on changes between covering Trump's White House and Biden's: fewer leaks, less drama, but lower ratings and web traffic
Sarah Jackson / Insider:
New York Magazine art critic Jerry Saltz says he refused a $250K deal from Substack, over 2x his current salary, says he doesn't want to write for “subscribers”
Sahil Patel / The Information:
Sources: Apple has had discussions with NFL execs to buy streaming rights for Sunday Ticket games, which currently air on DirecTV