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в 08:44

💡 WEEKEND NEWS. Semafor’s climate vertical is «under Chevron». China’s spam to hide information about COVID protests. New Zealand is like Australia and Canada. Twitter reinstated the account of neo-Nazi.

😉 Semafor‘s climate and energy editor Bill Spindle left last week, citing the outlet’s «over-dependence on Chevron advertising». But he is still on the website as an editor / The Wrap

💰 New Zealand plans to introduce legislation requiring companies like Meta and Google to pay local publishers for news, modeled after laws in Australia and Canada / Reuters

🤷‍♂️ Justin Smith says Sam Bankman-Fried doesn’t hold shares of Semafor, but if his interest converts to equity, he’ll have a single-digit minority stake / Justin Smith

🚫 China is flooding social media with spam to crowd out protest news. And network of bot accounts also hijacking hashtags in large-scale attempt to obscure coverage / Guardian

Twitter downfall:

📉 Twitter’s US ad revenue was 80% below internal expectations for the week of the World Cup’s Nov. 20 start, as Twitter keeps missing weekly ad targets / NYT

🆘 Twitter reinstated the account of Andrew Anglin, the neo-Nazi who founded the white supremacist website The Daily Stormer, after originally banning him in 2013 / HuffPost

🤡 Elon Musk blasted the New York Times Saturday for its refusal to cover the ongoing firestorm over political censorship at Twitter — damning the newspaper as a “lobbying firm for far-left politicians” / NY Post

в 10:40

💣 TOP OF THE WEEK: Two news media top manager departured this week — Mark Bauman from Grid and Keith Grossman from Time.

Initially we wanted to talk about the 30 years deal between Yahoo and Taboola, but then almost everyone wrote about it. So we’ve changed our mind and decided to write about two news media that missed the tops this week.

Grid. News media was founded by Laura McGann (ex-Vox) and Mark Bauman, a former ABC News reporter (and the money came from Abu Dhabi-based International Media Investments). McGann explained the main idea of Grid: “Our job is not to incrementally cover the news. We think that lots of places do that well. We’re watching the news and thinking, ‘OK, how can we freeze-frame and help people see a fuller picture?’”

So what? And now Mark Bauman is leaving the media he co-founded. As Axios wrote, Mark Bauman said he would be transitioning to an advisory role while the company looks for a new CEO that’s more focused on monetization. There are some financial issues in Grid: it spends a lot on office in Washington and on the staff (50 people). News media has attracted just 12,700 followers on Twitter, 1,676 followers on Instagram and 3,739 followers on Facebook since January — not much. So probably it’s time to change something. And they started with new CEO.

Time. Yes, Time is going to loose its President Keith Grossman, a staunch advocate of crypto and NFTs at Time (look at the NFT project TIMEPieces). He is leaving after 3,5 years in magazine to be the president of enterprise at crypto trading service MoonPay. Maya Draisin, Time’s chief brand officer, will lead TIMEPieces. Grossman began transitioning out of his role as president in January to focus on the publisher’s NFT business when Ian Orefice was named president and chief operating officer, according to a Time spokesperson.

So what? It is hard to predict the future of Web3 now, but Time was one of the first news media to pivot on NFT. And they are still going to follow this path after Grossman departure for MoonPay. Time has spent this year operationalizing its Web3 business and expanding out its team, and pointed to a TimePieces community of what he said is over 60,000 people and 150 artists. MoonPay’s pitch to investors is that it offers a “gateway” to digital assets. And despite of the FTX collapse, Grossman said that «it’s important to separate a bad actor from an industry«.

в 10:14

🇬🇧 Reach regional websites are on the top of the fastest-growing newsbrands in the UK in October.

There are four of Reach websites in the top 5 of the 50 biggest online news media.

Fastest-growing was Yorkshire Live (7.4 million visitors, up 56% month-on-month) followed by Chronicle Live (9.1 million, up 37%), Lancs Live (3.4 million, up 24%) and Liverpool Echo (13.1 million, up 19%).

The BBC is still the biggest UK newsbrand by audience (38 million visitors, 76% reach). The second is The S*n (28.9 million visitors, 58% reach) and another tabloid — Mirror is on the third place (23.4 million visitors, 47% reach).

Guardian — number four with 21,5 millions and 43% reach (just above Mail Online on the fifth).

Details: Press Gazette

в 12:43

🤖 A new INMA report shows how publishers are using robots to expand coverage as well as generate revenue.

It also features tips for publishers who are interested in introducing automation in their newsrooms.

«Newsrooms are learning to embrace automated tools» as fears about robots taking jobs abate, according to a new INMA report.

«With that acceptance comes the reassurance and understanding that, no matter how capable automated software becomes, it can’t replace the skills of a good journalist or editor» — writes author Paula Felps, Ideas Blog Editor, INMA and author of the report.

Details: What’s New in Publishing

в 09:55

💡 WEEKEND NEWS. British prefer to watch World Cup on TV. Qatar’s beIN Sports blocked streaming World Cup via TOD TV to hit Saudi Arabia football fans. Shutterstock will sell AI-made stock images.

World Cup in Qatar:

🤡 Saudi Arabia football fans hoping to watch World Cup action on streaming service TOD TV claim the government has blocked the platform from screening the games. TOD TV, which holds the rights to show the World Cup in Saudi Arabia, is owned by Qatar’s beIN Sports Media Group / Advanced Television

⚽️ Ofcom: 69% of those British fans would like to watch World Cup on TV. Among younger audience — 51% prefer TV / Advanced Television

What else:

🆘 The BBC says journalist Ed Lawrence, who was covering protests in Shanghai, was detained for several hours and beaten by police, without a credible explanation / Guardian

🍃 The Washington Post has grown its climate and environment team from six in 2018 to now more than 30 people. The investment signifies the importance of the coverage area for the publisher as it chases young readers who, it says, are drawn to this topic area / Digiday

😉 A torrent site user accused of downloading and uploading at least 120TB of movies, TV shows, eBooks, music and software, has avoided an immediate prison term / Torrent Freak

🚷 Shutterstock has begun experimenting with using generative AI, an emerging innovation that lets people enter text-based “prompts” to generate unique computer-made digital images. In late October, the company announced a plan to sell AI-made stock images in collaboration with OpenAI / Digiday

🤷‍♂️ Twitter’s $5bn-a-year business hit as Elon Musk clashes with advertisers. For example, platform’s ads team has shrunk so much after layoffs that ad agencies complain its ads systems are now buggy and that they lack a point of contact there / FT

в 16:45

🤔 ANALYTICS AND OPINIONS: 80% of your content is not worth to be published. Catch22. Median media industry salary in UK.
#mediaweek, vol.5

1️⃣ 80% of pageviews come from 20% (or less) of content. But it depends on topics, the size of the website and even on countries. For example, in UK 80% of page views come from 25,8% of content. In Japan — from just 12,5%. So… maybe 80% of your content is not worth to be published? / WNIP

2️⃣ Why are successful paywalls such a rarity in UK local press? The answers are in the size of the country, in BBC and in.. catch22 of course / PressGazette

3️⃣ Seven tips on producing a news series: think resource-friendly, consider lightweight options, brainstorming meetings are rarely useful for conjuring up ideas… / Journalism.co.uk

4️⃣ Almost a fifth of UK media worker make under £25,000 per year. And the median media industry salary reported by respondents to Press Gazette’s pay salary survey for 2022 was £41,700 / PressGazette

Opinion: Facts are free, but comment is sacred: the new reality for news publishers / Alan Hunter

в 15:45

💡 CASES: Simple revenue model works better for DAN. £134 400 per year — that’s how much local newsletter earns.
#mediaweek, vol.4

1️⃣ DAN, a US hyperlocal newspaper, built a sustainable revenue stream by charging its 500 subscribers $10 a month for a low-tech newsletter. The company is a family business created in 2019 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, US, covering a zone of about 30,000 people. Editor Peter Rice works with his wife Lindsay Wood and dad David Lee. The revenue model could not be much simpler. All stories are emailed once a week to some 500 subscribers and nothing is given away for free online. Its growth strategy is mostly word of mouth and since its inception, DAN’s audience has been growing at a steady rate of some 10 subscribers a month / Journalism.co.uk

2️⃣ Manchester-based email newsletter The Mill says it has reached profitability a month ahead of its second birthday. The outlet, which publishes through newsletter platform Substack, now has 27,000 people in Greater Manchester on its email list and 1,600 paying subscribers. Meanwhile, its sister newsletters, the Liverpool Post and Sheffield Tribune, have reached 650 and 900 paying subscribers, respectively. This gives them annualised subscription revenue of £134,400 for The Mill, £54,600 for The Post and £75,600 for the Tribune / PressGazette

в 14:15

📝 JOURNALISM: “Unlawful interference”. No regrets for prediction on midterms. Guilty to conspiracy to foreign collusion by calling for sanctions on Beijing and Hong Kong.
#mediaweek, vol.3

1️⃣ UK police review finds the arrest of four journalists covering Just Stop Oil protests in November could be “unlawful interference” in freedom of expression / PressGazette

2️⃣ Reporters Without Borders sues French media regulator Arcom for letting satellite operator Eutelsat continue to broadcast three Russian channels / Bloomberg

3️⃣ UK government refuses a measure that would have given judges the power to dismiss legal cases brought against journalists if the judges found them to be strategic lawsuits against public participation (SLAPP) / Guardian

4️⃣ None of the major US media outlets that predicted a “red wave” at the midterms regret the prediction or seem to be holding discussions on improving the coverage / Washington Post

5️⃣ Six ex-Apple Daily staff, including its EIC and publisher, plead guilty to conspiracy to foreign collusion by calling for sanctions on Beijing and Hong Kong / DW

в 12:45

💰 MEDIABUSINESS: Shrinking of Buzzfeed. India is the third podcast market. Who are the Smiths?
#mediaweek, vol.2

1️⃣ Detailed report on Buzzfeed from PressGazette. For example, time spent on its content dropped every quarter since Q3 2021, costs remain greater than revenues / PressGazette

2️⃣ Podcast network Luminary launches in India, which PwC says is the third largest podcast consumer market at 56.7M monthly listeners / Variety

3️⃣ Some investors raise concerns that a merger with Fox would undervalue News Corp. And they are ready to vote against merger / NYT

4️⃣ Substack sees an opportunity in Twitter’s chaos and offer the authors Bestseller badges (like a blue mark on Twitter) / Poynter

5️⃣ The Athletic plans to double its coverage of professional women’s sports through a multiyear partnership with Google / Axios

Longread: A profile of Justin Smith and Ben Smith — the founders of new media Semafor. Poiltico founder Robert Allbritton calls Semafor “Axios for FT people” / CJR

в 11:25

💣 TOP OF THE WEEK: The fall of crypto exchange FTX is a big media story as well.
#mediaweek, vol.1

What’s going on: The third largest crypto trader’s platform FTX collapsed a couple of weeks ago. Sam Bankman-Fried (the founder of FTX) was a hero, but became a zero in a day. Almost $1 billon of FTX clients funds missed. And it appears that nobody expected this.

Why it is matter: The problem is — nobody expected the collapse, almost everyone was pretty sure (or ambivalent) about FTX. Media wrote about Bankman-Fried, made a profile of him and his product. And missed everything.

What’s now: Media are going to deal with this news.

— Amazon and Rousso brothers plan to shoot an eight-episode limited series about FTX fall next spring.
— The author of «Moneyball» Michael Lewis are going to sign a deal with Apple about his book, covering FTX and Sam Bankman-Fried.
— The Information and Vice Media will do the documentary about FTX. «SBF and the End of Silicon Valley» will be delivered in Q2 2023.

The news about FTX gave birth to a lot of stories:

— In May 2022 Elon Musk wanted Bankman-Fried to add $100 millions to help him to buy Twitter. And now Kara Swicher calls Elon Musk «my greatest disappointment».
— New media of ex-Bloomberg media CEO Justin Smith — Semafor is under the fire for staying mum about whether it will return the now-bankrupt crypto firm’s money.
In late September, the Sequoia Capital website published a long, meandering profile of Sam Bankman-Fried called «Sam Bankman-Fried Has a Savior Complex — And Maybe You Should Too». And no correction has been made after the FTX collapse.

What’s next: It’s complicated. Because someone wrote that FTX scam is not the end of crypto. But someone wrote that the crypto bubble is already bursting. But in terms of media this story is a great opportunity. It is even bigger then story of Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes (sentenced to prison «with a minimum security» for 11 years).