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8:20 PM ET, February 7, 2024


 Top News: 
Alex Sherman / CNBC:
Disney says it plans to launch ESPN's D2C service in August or the fall of 2025, and include integration with ESPN's fantasy platforms and ESPN Bet  —  - ESPN will launch its flagship direct-to-consumer streaming service in the fall of 2025, Disney CEO Bob Iger said Wednesday.
Jennifer Maas / Variety:
Disney Q4: 111.3M Disney+ subscribers, down from 112.6M in Q3, Disney+ Hotstar adds 700K subscribers to 38.3M, and expects streaming profitability by Q4 2024  —  In its financials, which cover the Mouse House's first quarter for its fiscal year 2024, Disney projects adding between 5.5 million …
Sarah Whitten / CNBC:
Disney plans to invest $1.5B for a stake in Epic Games and collaborate on a new “universe” connected to Fortnite with content from Disney, Pixar, and more
Sarah Whitten / CNBC:
Disney reports Q1 revenue of $23.55B, about the same from a year ago, operating income up 27% YoY to $3.9B, and raises its guidance; $DIS up 5%+
Peter Kafka / Business Insider:
A sports streaming platform jointly owned by Disney, WBD, and Fox could reshape the TV industry but could also anger pay TV distributors and sports leagues  —  - A new sports-focused streaming platform could anger pay TV distributors and sports leagues.  — Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery …
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: NFL, NBA, and other sports leagues were kept in the dark about the sports streaming platform being launched by Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, and Fox  —  NFL, NBA digest details of new platform looming over their businesses  —  Sports leagues including the National Football League …
Dade Hayes / Deadline:
Fubo says it is concerned about the “impact on fair market competition” after Disney, Fox, and WBD announced a sports streaming platform; FUBO closed down 20%+  —  Streaming pay-TV operator Fubo, after its stock plunged 23%, issued a statement blasting the new sports streaming …
Claudia Chiappa / Politico:
Tucker Carlson faces backlash from American and Russian journalists after claiming that Western media is not making an effort to hear Putin's side of the story  —  The controversial pundit is interviewing the Russian leader.  Now other journalists are raging at “this SoB.”
Russia says Tucker Carlson is “not correct” to say no Western reporter tried to interview Putin, and Carlson is different from “traditional Anglo-Saxon media”
Dave Lawler / Axios:
Former Fox host Tucker Carlson says he has traveled to Moscow to interview Vladimir Putin and will air the interview “unedited” on his website and on X
Jem Aswad / Variety:
Memo: Warner Music plans to lay off 10% of its staff, or 600 people, wind down its podcast network Interval Presents, and sell the websites Uproxx and HipHopDX  —  The tough news continues for the music industry as Warner Music announced that it will lay off 10% of its staff, or 600 people, in the coming weeks.
The New York Times Company:
The NYT reports Q4 revenue up 1.3% YoY to $676M, subscription revenue up 3.3% YoY to $404M, and a $129M operating profit; Athletic revenue grew 31.3% to $38.5M  —  NEW YORK, February 7, 2024 - The New York Times Company (NYSE: NYT) announced today fourth- quarter and full-year 2023 results.
Kate Knibbs / Wired:
An interview with Nebojša Vujinović Vujo, who runs 2,000+ AI-generated news sites, often hosted on once-popular domains, and claims to have ~12 human editors  —  Serbian DJ turned internet entrepreneur Nebojša Vujinović Vujo floods abandoned news sites with AI-generated articles.
Alberto Fittarelli / The Citizen Lab:
How a network of 123+ China-based websites posing as local news outlets in 30 countries in Europe, Asia, and Latin America spreads pro-Beijing disinformation  —  Key Findings  — A network of at least 123 websites operated from within the People's Republic of China while posing …
Kara Swisher / New York Magazine:
An excerpt from Kara Swisher's upcoming book, Burn Book: covering digital media in the '90s, Facebook and Google becoming information gatekeepers, and more  —  My front-row seat to a slow-moving catastrophe.  —  In the early 1990s, I was a reporter at the Washington Post.
Ted Lipien / The Hill:
Current and ex-VOA journalists criticize the US agency for uploading propaganda messages from Putin and Alexander Lukashenko on its YouTube without any context  —  Voice of America (VOA), the U.S. government-funded media agency, created and uploaded to its YouTube channel a video …
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 More News: 
Natalie Korach / The Wrap:
News Corp Q2: revenue up 3% YoY to $2.59B, vs. $2.58B est., net income up 95% to $183M, Dow Jones with its highest quarterly revenue since its 2007 acquisition
Jared Holt / The Daily Beast:
How the author of notorious Hollywood gossip blog Crazy Days and Nights inadvertently revealed his identity to a Florida court following an extramarital affair
Discussion: @katienotopoulos and @eriqgardner
Alex Weprin / The Hollywood Reporter:
Fox Corp reports Q2 revenue down 8.7% YoY to $4.2B, net income down 64% YoY to $115M, affiliate fee revenue up 4% YoY to $1.8B, and ad revenue down 20% to $2B
 Earlier Picks: 
The New York Times' The Daily ran a greenwashing BP ad on its January 31 podcast, despite a 2021 pledge by the NYT to ban sponsorships by oil and gas companies