News & Insights

The Deadline: June 15 2022

By Rebecca Epps

The Deadline - Media Intelligence Newsletter.

Industry News

Forbes Scraps Plan to Go Public Via SPAC

Earlier this month, Forbes announced they were calling off the deal to go public. The deal would have taken the company public at a $630 million valuation through a merger with Magnum Opus Acquisition, a SPAC based in Hong Kong. The decision came after recent SPAC deals in media to live up to their promises to investors. Buzzfeed, which went public via SPAC in December, has seen shares go down 50%.

The Washington Post Goes Hollywood

The Washington Post announced a multi-year deal with Imagine Entertainment to create scripted and non-scripted film and TV content based on the Post’s vast archives, current reporting, and ongoing investigations. This comes after Jeff Bezos, owner of The Washington Post announced Amazon’s acquisition of MGM.

20 Million Tune Into January 6th Hearings

Last week, a little over 20 million people watched the hearings of the House of Representatives’ January 6 Committee. ABC News and CNBC drew the biggest audiences with former ABC News president, James Goldston, working with the committee to produce the hearings.

New Chief Executive Seeks to Brand CNN as ‘Less Sensationalist’

Chris Licht, new Chief Executive at CNN, is shifting the company’s brand to be less partisan and emphasizing “journalism over sensationalism.” Specifically, he wants to eliminate the overuse of the network’s “breaking news” banner. With these shifts, Licht also stated the company will evaluate reorganizing divisions and leadership.

Journalists Discuss Coverage of Mass Shootings

Charlotte Klein, staff writer at Vanity Fair’s Hive interviews veteran journalists on the future of covering mass shootings in the U.S. Debate revolves around whether or not to cover the shootings more grimly to create more attention and bring more action to gun control while also respecting the families’ privacy and journalistic traditions.

Fox Business Marks 2nd Consecutive Month as Leader in Business News

According to Nielson Media Research, Fox Business was the leader in business news for daily viewers for the second month in a row, topping CNBC. May also marked the network’s highest rated month since November 2020.

Facebook Reexamines its Commitment to Paying for News, Top Publications Stand to Lose Millions

Facebook is reexamining its partnerships with paying top tier media to share its news on the platform. The change comes as Facebook is trying to compete with TikTok and shifting from investing in news to sharing more product and video content.

Gannett Restructures Into Two Business Units

Gannett, owner of USA Today and local media organizations across 45 states, announced the company will restructure into two business units. The first structure will focus on news, content, operations, B2B marketing solutions (including advertising) and subscription growth through a “digital-first lens. The second unit, Digital Marketing Solutions (DMS), will aim to help brands and businesses attract and keep customers.

With this restructure, Kevin Gentzel, the chief revenue officer, and Bernie Szachara, the president of U.S. publishing operations, are leaving the company in the coming weeks.

Career Moves

NPR Names Juana Summers as Co-Host of ‘All Things Considered’

Juana Summers, veteran political correspondent at NPR, Associated Press, CNN and Mashable, is now the new co-host of NPR’s ‘All Things Considered.’ Summers replaces Audie Cornish, the longtime co-host who left this year to start a program for short-lived CNN+.

Kara Swisher Leaves the New York Times to Return to Vox Media

Kara Swisher, well-known tech reporter and co-founder of Vox’s ReCode is returning to Vox Media after being a columnist and podcaster at The New York Times since 2018. Swisher will host a new interview show at the Vox Media Podcast Network that will serve as a companion to “Pivot,” a business and technology program she’s co-hosted with New York University professor Scott Galloway for nearly four years.

Former CNBC Reporter Becomes New Tech and Innovation Editor at LinkedIn

Sam Shead, former tech correspondent at CNBC, joins LinkedIn as a tech and innovation editor. Prior to LinkedIn and CNBC, Shead worked at BBC and Business Insider UK.

Climate Reporter to Lead E&E’s First Newsletter

Arianna Skibell, a reporter covering transportation and climate at E&E News, will now anchor its first newsletter as a joint venture with Politico. At E&E, Skibell specifically covered the energy industry’s transition and covered climate change and transportation. Politico is the parent organization of E&E News.

Well-known Senior Booking Producer with Cheddar Goes Agency Side

Adriana Guzman, a long-time senior booking producer at Cheddar since 2017 shifts to agency side and will become Berlin Rosen’s new director of booking.

This Week’s Publication Spotlight

NBC’s Ideas Elevated Podcast – Senior CNBC Executive Producer on How to Pitch Wall Street TV

In a bit of a different approach to the publication spotlight, we highlight a great piece of content from NBC Universal Lift Labs. Todd Bonin, a Senior Executive Producer for Squawk on the Street and former Squawk Alley (now TechCheck), discusses how to pitch a business media news producer. Key tips Todd shares include:

  • Let producers know how your product solves a solution, why consumers need this, what makes it different than other products, and how much money is behind it.
  • Always tell the truth – “We’re looking for good stories. We’re not looking to be conned.”
  • Be able to tell your story in a way that is visual and in a way that shows how your company will grow. Why is your company relevant?
  • Don’t be self-serving; be ready to talk about other competitors, stocks and news in your industry.
  • Know your audience and be interesting. What about your story is going to make viewers listen after commercial break?

Take a listen to this “resurrection from the NBC archives” to learn key tips on how to make your pitch resonate with producers and key things NOT to do. You’ll definitely want to listen to this one.

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