Call the Lawyers
The battle between broadcast networks and Aereo is about to become must see TV.
Several networks complained that the Barry Diller-funded streaming service is threatening their bottom lines by retransmitting their signals without permission. The Supreme Court said today it will hear the broadcast networks’ case.
Those who keep a private plane waiting on the tarmac can afford to bring their outsized sense of entitlement—and accompanying misbehavior—along for the flight. Read More
Mo' Moonies Mo' Problems
Barry Diller is considering selling The Daily Beast, Bloomberg reports.
Yesterday’s news of Tina Brown’s departure from The Daily Beast, prompted speculation about the fate of the already unsteady publication. Today, some questions might have been answered, thanks to “a person with knowledge of the matter” who told Bloomberg that the IAC chairman is considering selling the Beast after Ms. Brown’s impending exit in January.
off the record
On Saturday, news broke that IBT Media, a company that runs the online business (at least, in theory) newspaper International Business Times, had purchased Newsweek from IAC. So IBT Media now owns Newsweek. But exactly who controls IBT Media?
IBT Media’s corporate leadership site lists two cofounders: Etienne Uzac, the company’s CEO, and Johnathan Davis, its chief content officer.
But some say that the company is actually controlled by—or at least has very close undisclosed ties to—someone whose name appears nowhere on the site: David Jang, a controversial Korean Christian preacher who has been accused of calling himself “Second Coming Christ.”
Is it happening again?
The bad time went by many names: the meltdown … the shakeout … the reckoning … the death of print… or sometimes, simply, “trying to freelance.”
Old-timers can still remember it—how, amid the frozen winter of 2008, the corridors of once unshakable media empires ran red with ink as the insertion orders dried up and crumbled into dust. Aeron chairs grew wet with tears. Editors were cashiered, contract writers flung overboard like chum. Soon you could see them all over Midtown: the sleek black Town Cars sitting idle on cinder blocks, rusting in the bleak unforgiving sun.
It was terrifying. The death knell—a merciless, unrelenting Twitter feed titled “The Media Is Dying”—sounded on a daily basis, sometimes hourly. Staffers watched in fear as the ghouls of HR, fingernails dabbed in scarlet, inched ever closer.
The New York Times is having a pretty good week so far.
The New York Times Company will get a cool $100 million in net profit for their interests in Indeed.com, the job search site, reports Reuters. Japanese executive search firm, Recruit Co Ltd., will acquire the website.
This comes after yesterday’s announcement that The New York Times Company had finalized the sale of About.com to Barry Diller’s IAC for $300 million in cash. That adds up to a nice bit of change.
Cutbacks at hip-hop magazine XXL, Barry Diller gets ’bout About, Pat Kiernan’s revenge narrative, Tina Brown’s tour of the woodshed, and the reason we will never, ever, ever be invited back on RT/Russia Today, at least for the 8 p.m. hour. All of this and more in your Tuesday Evening Media Briefs:
HOW THIS ALL WENT DOWN
Who’s the character behind the latest bit of Conde Nast roman a clef? What does Barry Diller think of his newly-owned print magazine? What constitutes superficial beauty in a place as fundamentally ugly as D.C.? Did Malcolm Gladwell cause the recession? Does he wish he did? Who is producing the most powerful journalism of the day? And will Robert take K-Stew back? Today’s Power Lunch is brought to you by the Four-Cosmo Circa 2007 Michael’s Expense Account Lunch and Towncar Combo, and offers no real answers to any of those questions. These are your afternoon media briefs:
Wheels of Change
Remember that time Newsweek magazine was put up for sale by The Washington Post and then “saved” by then-91-year-old stereo magnate Sidney Harman (of the wonderful line of audio/visual products Harman + Kardon)? Well, less than two years ago, that actually happened. Now, that era is over, as the Harman family is done investing in Newsweek. As a result, IAC is now a majority owner, with a print publication on its books. How, exactly, did any of this happen in the first place?
Brooklyn bikers received a treat to the tune of $40 million dollars!
Joshua Rechnitz, a cyclist and the grandson of New York philanthropists, pledged a $40 million dollar gift to the city to build a field house in the Brooklyn Bridge Park, The New York Times reported.