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8:25 AM ET, October 18, 2021


 Top News: 
Ben Smith / New York Times:
Docs show Axel Springer faced claims that Bild's workplace culture mixed sex, journalism, and company cash; Axios' Jim VandeHei says merger talks were “sneaky”  —  A high-flying German media giant is ahead on digital media but seems stuck in the past when it comes to the workplace and deal-making.
Bojan Pancevski / Wall Street Journal:
Axel Springer CEO details plans for Politico, including expanding staff from 900 to 1,000, publishing in several languages, and eventually adding a paywall  —  Axel Springer, whose $1 billion acquisition of Politico is expected to close next week, also eyes foreign-language editions
Lucas Shaw / Bloomberg:
Internal document: Netflix estimates Squid Game will create almost $900M in value for the company; 87M viewers finished the series in the first 23 days  —  More than 130 million people have watched the Korean show  —  Netflix estimates that its latest megahit, “Squid Game,” …
Zoe Schiffer / The Verge:
Netflix fires a leader of the trans employee resource group who was organizing a walkout, for allegedly leaking metrics related to the Dave Chappelle special  —  The company suspects they leaked metrics about the Dave Chappelle special to the press  —  Netflix has fired a leader …
Lucas Shaw / Bloomberg:
Leaked Netflix documents of metrics evaluating shows indicate $24.1M spent on Chappelle's The Closer vs. $21.4M on Squid Game
IATSE and AMPTP reach a deal, avoiding a strike that would have shut film and TV production; new contract needs to be ratified by IATSE members  —  EXCLUSIVE: With Hollywood on edge and picket signs at the ready, IATSE and the AMPTP have reached an agreement on a new film and TV contract, averting a threatened nationwide strike.
Patrick McGee / Financial Times:
Analysis: Apple Search Ads now account for 58% of iOS app installs from an ad click, up from 17% a year ago; Apple to earn $5B from its ads business in FY 2021  —  iPhone maker's share of mobile app advertising market has tripled in six months  —  Apple's advertising business has more than tripled …
Tripp Mickle / Wall Street Journal:
A look at YouTube's in-house creator partnerships team, which has over 1,000 employees across 45 countries offering advice and guidance to about 12,000 creators  —  The site has spent more than a decade building an in-house agency for digital superstars, drawing ad sales, sponsorships and other revenue
Priyanjana Bengani / Columbia Journalism Review:
Margaret Sullivan / Washington Post:
Alexandra Steigrad / New York Post:
Disney shares briefly rose ~3% on Friday after a Puck report said the company might spin off ESPN; a Disney source later said the story was inaccurate  —  Shares of Disney jumped as much as 3 percent Friday after a report said the company was considering a spinoff of its ESPN sports networks.
Hollywood Reporter:
Netflix leases LA's historic Bay Theater, which closed for the pandemic, and will reopen it starting October 22 for special events and screenings of its films  —  The deal expands the streamer's ability to screen its movies on the big screen during awards season, as well as helping struggling cinemas to stay open.
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 More News: 
Sources: China is considering asking Tencent, ByteDance, and other media companies to let rivals access and display their content in search results
Amanda Meade / The Guardian:
News Corp. CEO Robert Thomson will appear before an Australian Senate inquiry into media diversity; Lachlan Murdoch turned down a request to appear last month
Karolle Rabarison / Online Journalism Awards:
2021 Online Journalism Awards winners include The NYT, ProPublica, PublicSource, and Grist; WaPo won for its pandemic coverage
Justin Peters / Slate:
Ben Smith has been transparent about his BuzzFeed stock options, but his shifting divestment deadline and their fluctuating value erode trust in his reporting
 Earlier Picks: 
Alex Sujong Laughlin / Study Hall:
Social media and audio production are just two of the invisible structures built to prop up a select few voices
Nikki Usher / Nieman Lab:
With two-thirds of NPR's stations licensed to colleges, which are vulnerable to culture wars, stronger walls between license holders and newsrooms are needed
David Bauder / Associated Press:
News Leaders Association extends deadline for its newsroom staff diversity survey to October 31, after receiving less than 250 responses when it wants 1,500