In your fuckin' Friday media column: the 'Do Not Feed Carson Daly' sign is ignored, rumors (now confirmed) of Brandweek's disintegration, and reporters want money from everyone, including Warren Buffett:

"NBC Picks Up 'Last Call With Carson Daly.'" We stopped reading at that point.

Today in dubious schemes to save newspaper reporters: former staffers of the dead Rocky Mountain News are launching an online news site, and good luck to them with it; the governor of Washington state is giving a 40% tax break to newspapers; and the Dutch government is paying $5 million to fund the salaries of 60 journalists for two presumably very government-friendly years.

A WaPo business columnist tells Warren Buffett that "this is the opportunity of a lifetime as far as newspaper investing is concerned." Only if your life is very, very short, sir. As if this newspaper column wasn't enough stress on America's richest man for one day, Warren Buffett is also no longer Jon Friedman's hero. Will the Oracle of Omaha Have the Strength to Carry On? Stay tuned to newspapers to find out.

RUMORS: We hear from a fairly good source that Nielsen Business Media is moving closer to possibly folding Brandweek, Mediaweek, and Adweek into one magazine. Specifically, we hear that Brandweek had "significant firings" today, and that the situation there is so critical that editors are making ad sales calls. If you know more, email us.
UPDATE: Here are two internal memos—the first from a former Brandweek employee, and the second from Nielsen corporate:

From the Brandweek employee:

"Apologies for this e-blast, but it can cover a lot of ground. And, I wanted
to inform you that . . .

I was laid off from my job at Brandweek yesterday, after 16-plus years
there, as part of more cutbacks ³due to the economy² and projections being
³worse than expected.²

Overall, The Nielsen Co. has laid off about 2,000 employees since being
acquired from VNU Media by a consortium of six equity investment firms. A
lot of good, competent, highly talented folks were let go before me. The
parting words were: ³This is not performance based. We need to eliminate

So, I¹ll soon be joining some good friends in the search for another job, at
a time when the job market seems very bleak."

From Nielsen to employees:


Message from Gerry Byrne

Over the past year, we have made important strides in maximizing the
strength of our brands by bringing together the power of our collective
resources, solutions, and leadership talent. As we continue on that path, I
am pleased to announce that Geri FitzGerald, Publisher of Mediaweek, will
now assume a broader role as Publisher of Mediaweek and Brandweek.

In assuming oversight of Brandweek, Geri succeeds Tom Woerner, who is
leaving the Company to pursue other interests. I want to take this
opportunity to thank Tom for his contributions to the growth and success of
the brand.

In her new capacity, Geri will continue to partner with Alison Fahey,
Publisher and Editorial Director of Adweek, to further build the strength,
reach and potential of these three world-class brands and innovatively tap
into the products and services across Nielsen.

Please join me in wishing Tom much success in his future endeavors and
offering your continued support to Geri as she assumes this expanded role
within Nielsen Business Media.

Gerry Byrne
Senior Vice President
Media & Entertainment Group