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Your Media Morning: NY Observer For Sale? Publishers Thinking Voice Platforms, Disney Launching Snapchat Shows, Vice Media COO Moves to A&E Networks

BUZZFEED AND TIME INC LAUNCH HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDES IN MESSENGER
Tis the season to give and receive and and Time Inc and Buzzfeed are here to help. Both companies are bringing their holiday gift guides to Facebook Messenger. Buzzfeed launched the 'Ultimate Gift Finder' which asks users key questions about budget and what they're looking for and then responds with 100 suggestions.

VIACOM CEO BOB BAKISH'S EFFORT TO REBUILD THE CABLE NETWORKS CLAIMS ITS FIRST CASUALTY, DOUGE HERZOG
Mr. Herzog most recently worked as president of its Music & Entertainment Group, which included MTV, Comedy Central, VH1, Spike and Logo TV networks. Now, the heads of those networks will directly report to Mr. Bakish, the company said Wednesday. Viacom’s TV networks have struggled to keep pace with the rapid digital changes transforming the way people watch television and interact with media.

KATIE COURIC IS RETURNING TO THE TODAY SHOW
Couric will be back alongside Matt Lauer for the week of Jan. 2, according to people at the morning program who are familiar with the plan but not authorized to discuss it publicly. Couric will be substituting for Lauer’s current on-air partner, Savannah Guthrie, who is on maternity leave after giving birth to her second child Dec. 9. Guthrie recently signed a new long-term contract with “Today.”

PUBLISHERS ARE EXPERIMENTING WITH AMAZON'S ALEXA AND GOOGLE HOME VOICE PLATFORMS
All of a sudden, publishers have two voice platforms to worry about. While publishers big and small are still figuring out where Amazon’s voice platform, Alexa, fits into their daily allocation of time and resources, it’s become clear that everybody will have to divide their time.

BAUER XCEL GET ALMOST 100% OF ITS REVENUE PROGRAMMATICALLY
Bauer Xcel, the U.S. digital arm of Bauer Media Group, is one such publisher working to use data to ensure that its editorial and revenue strategies are tightly aligned. The company –which holds titles like In Touch and Life&Style Weekly – vigilantly analyzes the performance of its content and the other elements of its pages to make certain it is both serving engaging content and intelligently delivering advertiser campaigns.

TIME INC BARELY BEATS EARNINGS EXPECTION BY $0.01
Time Inc. released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday. The company reported $0.31 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.30 by $0.01. Time had a negative net margin of 28.56% and a positive return on equity of 6.36%. The business earned $750 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $770.57 million. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.32 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 3.0% compared to the same quarter last year.

DISNEY LAUNCHING SNAPCHAT SHOWS BEGINNING WITH A BACHELOR SPINOFF
Disney is going to start producing shows for Snapchat. According to a report from Reuters, Disney-ABC Television Group (the company’s US TV arm) will create several new series that will exist as Snapchat Stories. The first show to launch will be a recap of ABC’s The Bachelor called Watch Party: The Bachelor on January 3rd. Details on the Bachelor recap are scarce.

BUSINESS INSIDER'S EXECUTIVE EDITOR IS LEAVING TO BECOME EDITORIAL DIRECTOR AT CNBC DIGITAL
Matt Rosoff will join CNBC in the newly-created position of editorial director for CNBC Digital. The Bay Area-based Rosoff will lead digital’s tech coverage and report to Jay Yarow. Rosoff comes to CNBC from Business Insider where he was executive and West Coast bureau chief overseeing tech coverage for the site, which he joined in 2010.

WILL THE CELLPHONE REPLACE THE CABLE BOX?
After years of consistent growth, the pay-TV business moved abruptly to full-year subscriber losses in 2013; meanwhile, mobile video, dominated by Facebook and Google’s YouTube, is growing so quickly that ad revenue is expected to top $6 billion by 2019. In response, the industry has been flooded with over-the-top “skinny” bundle options designed to attract the growing ranks of cord cutters.

TIME WARNER'S SHARES ON A HIGH
Time Warner’s initiative to foray into new markets has been helping in broadening its client base and product portfolio. Management is now concentrating on enhancing its reach in the existing territories, through investments in local production and gaining distribution rights for new networks. Moreover, rising demand of its content from distributors and other cable or satellite providers is augmenting the company’s revenues.

VICE MEDIA COO TAKES ON GLOBAL COMMS ROLE AT A&E NETWORKS
A+E Networks has appointed Vice Media COO Alyssa Mastromanco as president of global communications strategy and talent. In the newly created role, Mastromonaco, former White House deputy chief of staff for operations, will oversee human resources, communications between the different divisions of the global media company and interactions with outside government and private entities.

NETFLIX'S TWITTER ACCOUNT ATTACKED
One of Netflix’s Twitter accounts was hacked on Wednesday by an entity calling itself “OurMine.” Several mocking tweets were sent from the Netflix US Twitter account (@netflix). OurMine is well known for breaking into high-profile social media accounts.

ZUCKERBERG SAYS FACEBOOK IS NOT A TRADITIONAL MEDIA COMPANY
Facebook, said CEO Mark Zuckerberg, is not a “traditional” media company or a “traditional” technology company. It’s an important distinction: Wall Street rewards technology companies with much higher price-to-earnings ratios than pure-play media companies.

HEARST MAGAZINES HAS A RECORD TRAFFIC MONTH IN NOVEMBER
As media companies wind down the year, for a great majority it’s all about traffic. How good were this year’s numbers? What does 2017 look like? How many readers relied on ad-blocking software? And so on. In the case of Hearst magazines, traffic was through the roof in November.
 
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Your Media Morning: NY Observer For Sale? Publishers Thinking Voice Platforms, Disney Launching Snapchat Shows, Vice Media COO Moves to A&E Networks Reviewed by Editor on Thursday, December 22, 2016 Rating: 5
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