The Globe Vote, Meet the Press Ratings, Tabloid Catfight

cityfile · 05/14/09 12:28PM

• Union members at the Boston Globe will vote on the controversial concession package proposed by the New York Times Co. on June 8. [E&P]
• Last week's broadcast of Meet the Press earned the NBC chatfest its lowest ratings since David Gregory took over as moderator. [HuffPo]
• Supermarket tabloid smackdown: Us Weekly is standing up for integrity in journalism (and Brangelina) by waging war against In Touch. [TMZ, Gawker]
• Who says magazines are dead? The publisher of Interview is in the process of launching a quarterly design magazine called Modern. [Folio]
• Neil Patrick Harris will host the 2009 Tony Awards on June 7. [AP]
• The two American journalists who were first detained in North Korea two months will go on trial for "hostile acts" on June 4. [NYT]

The Times Cuts Pay, The Onion Cuts Two Editions

cityfile · 05/05/09 11:59AM

New York Times union members approved a five percent pay cut last night, which takes effect today. Meanwhile, the NYT will resume negotiations with the Boston Globe's largest union at 5pm this afternoon. [NYP, E&P]
• The Onion is killing off its LA and San Francisco print editions. [Gawker, MP]
• How desperate has NBC become? Execs have announced that Jay Leno "is not afraid to experiment with live commercials and with sponsorships." [AdAge]
• Better news for NBC: It scored big with its coverage of the Derby. [NYP]
• Ad spending in the fourth quarter fell 9.2% from a year earlier. [WSJ]
• Writers gathered last night to say goodbye to the Times' City section. [NYO]

Meet the Press Holds On, Building Pressure at the Times

cityfile · 12/30/08 12:04PM

• Despite the change in moderators, NBC's Meet the Press continues to dominate the Sunday morning competition. [THR]
• MTV has canceled 50 Cent's reality show. [NYP]
• The New York Times Co. is busy trying to raise capital, but the company may have to take more radical action to turn the ship around. [Reuters]
• Magazine editors on how to find happiness in 10 minutes or less. [WWD]
• It's been a lousy year for most media moguls, but Liberty Media's John Malone appears to have had the least miserable one. [NYT]

Tribune Faces Bankruptcy, Hefner Skips Out on Dad

cityfile · 12/08/08 10:26AM

♦ The Tribune Co. is now hovering dangerously close to bankruptcy. [NYT]
♦ Media companies have let 30,000 people go thus far this year. [AdAge]
♦ Christie Hefner is stepping down as CEO of Playboy. [Bloomberg]
♦ It's now official: David Gregory is the new host of Meet the Press. [NYT]
♦ The New York Times Co. says it plans to borrow $225 million against the value of its new office building to "ease a potential cash flow squeeze." [NYT]
♦ More on the changes to NBC's executive ranks last week. [Variety]
♦ Ad agencies are bracing for a round of deep cost cuts. [NYP]
♦, the site featuring writing by the likes of Liz Smith and Lesley Stahl, has raised $1.5 million from Bob Pittman, among others. [NYP]
Four Christmases was No. 1 at the box office this weekend for a second week in a row. [Reuters]

David Gregory Caught In 'Nervous' Lie Scandal!

Hamilton Nolan · 12/08/08 09:24AM

People across the political spectrum had mixed feelings about Tim Russert, the recently deceased former host of Meet The Press. But whether you thought he was the toughest interviewer in DC or a toadying cock-gobbler to power, you had to admit that he probably got his job based on a genuine zeal for reporting, rather than because he was some network exec's ideal of a telegenic newsman. Now that David Gregory has taken over the gig, we'll get to see the network-ideal-telegenic-gasbag type in action. Problem one: his insincere self-deprecation skills:

TONY Up for Sale, Dark Day in Publishing

cityfile · 12/03/08 11:35AM

Time Out New York is now up for sale for $40 million. [Times UK]
♦ A major reorganization at Random House was announced today by the company's new CEO, Markus Dohle. [NYO]
♦ Simon & Schuster is laying off 35 people. [Gawker]
♦ NBC appears to have settled on David Gregory as the new host of Meet the Press, but the network has yet to finalize the deal. [NYT]
Tina Fey didn't get a $5 million book deal. It was $6.9 million. [NYP]
♦ Are you an unemployed writer? Get in touch with Tina Brown! [NYO]
♦ Miles O'Brien is departing CNN. [TVN]

Tall Clown Will Host TV News Anachronism

Pareene · 12/02/08 12:58PM

Extremely tall man David Gregory will be your next host of Meet the Press. He's still famous mostly for dancing and for arguing with Bush press secretaries, which proves that he's a serious journalist, and it also served the press well to look like it was totally standing up to Bush just as it served the administration well to look like innocent victims of the liberal media. That is how the world works. Who knows how he'll perform on that show, because frankly the format itself is outdated and useless. The late Tim Russert was no prize either, friends. But Gregory is just... kind of annoying.

David Gregory To Run Meet The Press?

Ryan Tate · 12/01/08 08:03PM

The Huffington Post reported David Gregory will take over for Tim Russert as permanent moderator of Meet The Press after beating out finalists Andrea Mitchell, Gwen Ifill and Chuck Todd. NBC told Politico, "I don't know where they are getting this," and Gregory's agent would neither confirm nor deny to the Observer. Dark-horse candidate Katie Couric is reportedly not interested. Odd that NBC News would leak to HuffPo, given the network division's apparent long-running feud with publisher Arianna Huffington, but then there have been signs that the bad feelings have perhaps been dropped.

Wolff on Murdoch, More Bad News for Newspapers

cityfile · 12/01/08 11:38AM

Michael Wolff's biography of Rupert Murdoch goes on sale tomorrow, as you probably know thanks to the torrent of coverage over the past couple of days. Among the juiciest bits: Murdoch despises Bill O'Reilly, his wife Wendi Deng occasionally reads his email, and he's fond of sleeping pills. [NYT, Gawker, Politico, NYO, Portfolio]
♦ The third quarter of 2008 was a punishing one for newspapers. Ad revenue plunged 18.11 percent, the steepest decline in four decades. [E&P]
Tina Brown's pick for host of Meet the Press: Rachel Maddow. [TDB]
Four Christmases was No. 1 at the box office over the weekend, racking up an estimated $31.7 million in ticket sales. [THR]

Sweeps Ratings, Layoffs & Super Bowl Ads

cityfile · 11/26/08 10:06AM

♦ CBS is expected to win November sweeps for the eighth straight year. [AP]
♦ Another victim of the recession: publishing industry lunches. [NYO]
♦ The Super Bowl isn't looking up for NBC. Sales of 30-second ads have slowed and there are rumors some companies are now asking for discounts. [AP]
♦ In an attempt to ride Barack Obama's coattails to relevancy, MTV is planning a "Rock 'N Roll Inaugural Ball" for January 20. [AdAge]
Life & Style is on life support and is laying off staff. [NYP]
♦ Contenders to take over Meet the Press include David Gregory, Gwen Ifill, Andrea Mitchell, and NBC political director Chuck Todd. The news may be announced December 7th. [LAT]

Why Was Katie Couric On A Dinner Date With NBC?

Ryan Tate · 11/11/08 07:20AM

It's just a brief item, reporting that NBC chief Jeff Zucker was spotted with "old pal Katie Couric huddling over dinner at Elio's." But Page Six's sighting of the CBS Evening News anchor with her old Today boss will inevitably stoke further speculation about the possibility she might take over for Tim Russert at NBC's Meet The Press. The alleged dinner comes barely a week after the Times reported NBC executives were bandying Couric's name as a possible anchor for the Sunday-morning interview show. Gossip aside, let's move on to speculation: Wouldn't the gig just be an awful reprise of the CBS Evening News disaster?

The Times Endorses Obama, Radar Closes

cityfile · 10/24/08 09:29AM

♦ The New York Times has endorsed Barack Obama, not surprisingly. [NYT]
♦ If Bravo loses Project Runway, there's always the copycat show Fashion House to fill the void. [NYP]
Maer Roshan's Radar magazine has folded. [Gawker]
OK! has a brand new editor, publisher and executive creative director. [NYP]

Hannity Re-Ups, Ryan Seacrest Prepares to Invade NYC

cityfile · 10/08/08 11:11AM

Sean Hannity has signed a new "multi-year" deal with Fox News. [THR]
♦ Cutbacks at the Wall Street Journal: Reporters will only get one laptop now, not two. [Gawker]
♦ Ratings for Meet the Press have dropped since Tim Russert's passing. [NYP]
♦ The New York Times is shutting down the website for the International Herald Tribune. [E&P]
People is rushing to market a 96-page, soft-cover book commemorating Paul Newman. [Folio]
Dan Rather is seeking to expand his suit against CBS. And he's "only" making $1.5 million a year at HDNet, in case you were wondering. [Bloomberg]
♦ Dreamworks is downsizing. [Nikki Finke]
♦ The Natalee Holloway made-for-TV movie is on the way. To Lifetime, naturally. [NYP]
♦ Ryan Seacrest's radio show is coming to New York. And some people wonder why radio is dying. [NYP]