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Your Media Morning: Snapchat’s Big Money Goal, Hef’s Magazine is For Sale Again, Former Time Inc CTO Lands New Gig, A new CEO For Viacom Again

THE CURRENT OWNER OF PLAYBOY IS IN TALKS TO SELL THE MAGAZINE
Hollywood executives Jeff Sagansky and Harry Sloan have their eyes on Playboy. The duo’s Double Eagle Acquisition Corp., which raised $500 million last year, are in “advanced talks” with Playboy owner Rizvi Traverse, according to a report Wednesday by Reuters. Playboy has been struggling to find relevance in a world where free internet porn is readily available.

THE FINANCIAL TIMES LAUNCHES U.S MARKETING CAMPAIGN
The Financial Times’ new marketing strategy taps into specific events in the news agenda as a means to build brand awareness around high-profile moments. First implemented during Brexit, the latest campaign promotes the FT’s “trustworthy” coverage of the year’s biggest political event, the US presidential election.

BLOOMBERG MEDIA FACES GENDER BIAS LAWSUIT FROM FORMER EDITOR AFTER FIRING
Christine Staiti, an editor and 15-year veteran of Bloomberg News, was wrongly let go less than a month after complaining to her boss about the “exclusively male” makeup of important editorial positions, a lawsuit claims. “When there is an opening for a new editor or team leader, the position often isn’t posted and, invariably, a man is chosen for it.”

GO INSIDE FACEBOOK'S PIXAR CLONE FOR VR SHORT FILMS
“Henry” is an animated short film about a hedgehog who loves to hug. The trouble is, stuck with prickly spines, it’s hard for Henry to make friends — which makes for a very lonely birthday. It’s a cute little Pixar-esque story narrated by Elijah Wood that became the first-ever original virtual reality film to win an Emmy Award when it took home the “Most Outstanding Original Interactive Program” prize this year. The 12-minute film was made by Oculus Story Studio, a VR film studio formed by Facebook and Oculus last year to bring more narrative work to VR.

TIME INC UK NAMES HEAD OF MARKET FOR CYCLING
Industry advertising sales veteran Sean Igoe has joined Cycling Weekly publisher Time Inc as its head of market for cycling. Joining from Dennis Publishing where he enjoyed the rapid success of Cyclist and Bikes ETC, Igoe played a part in guiding these titles to a market share grab of 38% from a standing start. Prior to this, Sean worked at Factory Media and Future Publishing.

FORMER TIME INC CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER COLIN BODELL LANDS AT AMERICAN EAGLE OUTFITTERS AT ITS FIRST CHEIF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER
Based in Pittsburgh, Mr. Bodell will lead the retailer’s digital technology team of engineers, software developers, analysts and IT staff. He reports to Chief Operating Officer Michael Rempell.

PUBLISHERS EXPERIMENT WITH AFFILIATE MARKETING
Time Inc., Conde Nast and Vox Media are all using affiliate links through Skimlinks, a service that connects online publishers with retailers. Hearst, which owns magazines such as Esquire, Cosmo and Elle, last year rolled out a site called BestProducts.com that is centered around affiliate links to recommended products. The Washington Post, owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, includes affiliate links in some articles.

THE FUTURE OF FASHION MAGAZINES
Most of the concern surrounding declining print magazine sales circulated through articles and social media a couple of years ago, however, looking at reports from the Association of Magazine Media, recurring patterns suggest this is also a contemporary issue. For example, between August 2015 and August 2016, Country Living (a popular home style magazine) saw an increase of 60.1% in their digital sales and only an increase of 0.4% in their print sales.

THE NEW YORK TIMES AND OTHER MEDIA COMPANIES SELL TICKETS FOR THEIR ELECTION NIGHT EVENTS
The New York Times, which hosted a large election event in 2008, is doing so again this year. For $250, ticket-holders are invited to hear Times reporters, editors, and executives -- including executive editor Dean Baquet and CEO Mark Thompson -- as well as "special guests" discuss the election. Guests will also be able to attend a cocktail reception after the forum ends.

BUZZFEED CEO ON FACEBOOK LIVE, JAPAN, INVANKA TRUMP AND OVER INVESTING IN FACEBOOK MARKETING
Facebook is one of the most powerful, most important platforms. I’m very happy that we invested in Facebook. I also think that we have a very strong relationship with YouTube, Snapchat, Twitter, and we hope to build deeper relationships with Line and platforms that are big outside of the U.S. The media consumption is moving to these platforms. And being a closer partner with them is as important today as it was to be a closer partner with a cable network or satellite TV provider or other forms of distribution that existed in the past.

HERE IS WHAT PUBLISHERS ARE UP AGAINST WITH THEIR FACEBOOK EFFORTS
Facebook is all powerful and it knows it. Publishers have little choice but to play by its rules. At Digiday’s Publishing Summit in Nice we asked publishers what their biggest challenge with Facebook was: unclear metrics, murky routes to monetization and unpredictable priorities were among them.

RUPERT MURDOCH IS STILL WAITING ON AN ANSWER FROM FOX NEWS HOST MEGYN KELLY ABOUT EXTENDING HER CONTRACT
Rupert Murdoch just did something highly unusual: He gave an interview to one of his newspapers about contract negotiations at one of his TV networks. Murdoch told the Wall Street Journal that he would like to renew the contracts of the two biggest stars on Fox News, Bill O'Reilly and Megyn Kelly. But he also laid the groundwork for Kelly's potential departure from Fox.

VIACOM IS ABOUT TO NAME ITS LONG TIME INTERNATIONAL CHIEF BOB BAKISH AS ITS NEW INTERIM CEO 
Viacom Inc. is close to naming longtime executive Bob Bakish interim chief executive officer as the company explores a possible merger with CBS Corp., according to people with knowledge of the matter. Bakish will have the opportunity to become permanent CEO, said one of the people, who asked not to be named discussing private deliberations. The decision to name him isn’t final, and someone else could be chosen, they said. Viacom’s board is scheduled to meet Monday but could sooner.

COMCAST'S STOCK FALLS
Comcast said that it added more than 300,000 TV or internet subscribers in the third quarter as profits jumped 15 percent. Still, Wall Street greeted the “terrific” results by beating up the cable company’s stock as analysts looked for Comcast’s next big strategic move after AT&T’s “master stroke” in reaching a deal to acquire Time Warner for $85 billion.

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC GOES "FURTHER" IN NEW GLOBAL REBRANDING EFFORT
 National Geographic Channel’s recent reinvention, and National Geographic’s expanded partnership with 21st Century Fox last fall, is ushering in a global rebrand for the entire company. All of National Geographic’s global properties have a new tagline, “Further,” while National Geographic Channel will be dropping “Channel” from its name.

VERIZON BUYS VIDEO PLATFORM 'VESSEL' FROM FORMER HULU CEO
Verizon said it is buying the technology behind Vessel, the short-form video firm started by former Hulu CEO Jason Kilar. The telecom giant is acquiring Vessel’s product and technology, but plans to shut down the Vessel service. Kilar won’t be joining Verizon long-term, but his co-founder, Vessel CTO Richard Tom, will become the CTO for Verizon’s digital entertainment efforts.

THE YAHOO NAME WILL REMAIN AFTER VERIZON DEAL
Verizon is treading carefully with Yahoo, but still wants to seal the deal. “The deal makes strategic sense,” said Marni Walden, EVP of business innovation for Verizon. She continues to believe there’s value in the Yahoo name, noting that it won’t go away if Verizon completes its acquisition. Brands like Yahoo Mail and Yahoo Finance still draw plenty of eyeballs.

GROUPON IS BUYING LIVING SOCIAL
Groupon has agreed to buy LivingSocial, its main competitor in the daily-deals industry. Chicago-based Groupon said in its third-quarter earnings report that it entered into the agreement with Washington, D.C.-based LivingSocial on Monday. Groupon did not disclose the value of the deal but said, “The acquisition consideration is not material.”
 

-Good Morning
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Your Media Morning: Snapchat’s Big Money Goal, Hef’s Magazine is For Sale Again, Former Time Inc CTO Lands New Gig, A new CEO For Viacom Again Reviewed by Editor on Thursday, October 27, 2016 Rating: 5
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