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Your Media Morning: Rupert Murdoch's Sons Are Stepping Up, Indie Fashion Mags Are Doing Great, Facebook Goes After Snapchat Again

TIME INC'S GOLF.COM GETS A MAKEOVER COMPLETE WITH MORE HORSES UNDER THE HOOD
Golf.com, part of Time Inc's Sports Illustrated Group, went under the knife and is back looking cleaner, leaner and oh yeah, its faster too. The new site promises a better user experience...
WAIT... SAY WHAT NOW?
"I don’t think anyone wants to acknowledge that he is about to be 86 years old"
A MURDOCH FAMILY FRIEND ABOUT RUPERT MURDOCH'S FAMILY
INDEPENDENT FASHION MAGAZINES ARE DOING BETTER THAN THEIR BIGGER COUNTERPARTS IN PRINT
Vestoj, Dazed and Confused, Love, Kinfolk, V, Interview, and System are independent magazines, some names less familiar than others, enjoying growing success while their mainstream counterparts such as Instyle, Glamour and Cosmopolitan have shown a consistent drop in circulation. At a time when print is seemingly waning with many titles now transitioning to digital-only, the success of mainly fashion-based indie magazines seems puzzling.

MEREDITH CORP CEO STEVE LACY STILL PLAYING COY ABOUT THOSE TIME INC RUMORS
On Wednesday morning's earnings call with investors, Lacy repeated the refrain that the company is open to potential acquisitions and mergers, but he declined to comment on any specifics.
"As we've consistently stated, we continue to explore opportunities to add attractive print, broadcast and of course digital brands to our media portfolio," Lacy said. "We have a consistent track record of being very disciplined acquirers. But just like any other public company, we'll not comment on market rumors or market speculation."

FACEBOOK CONTINUES TO ADJUST TO THE REALITY THAT ITS AN INFLUENTIAL NEWS & INFORMATION SOURCE
After the social network faced heavy criticism for disseminating fake news during the presidential election, Facebook rolled out a fact-checking program and unveiled a new journalism initiative, led by Campbell Brown, earlier this month.

GOOGLE GOING AFTER FAKE NEWS SITES AND AD VIOLATORS AGGRESSIVELY
Google tightened its policies on the 2 million or so publishers in its AdSense ad network to ban website owners who deceive people into thinking they’re real news sites. From November to December 2016, Spencer said, Google reviewed 550 sites “suspected of misrepresenting content to users, including impersonating news organizations, and kicked out nearly 200 publishers permanently.

SNAPCHAT SEEKS BIG AD DEALS AHEAD OF IPO
As Snap Inc. woos Wall Street ahead of its initial public offering, the parent of the popular messaging app is also spending plenty of time courting another constituency: advertisers on Madison Avenue. The Venice, Calif. company is in talks with the media-buying arms of several big advertising companies, including WPP PLC, Omnicom Group Inc., Publicis Groupe SA, and Interpublic Group of Cos., and is seeking ad-spending commitments of $100 million to $200 million for 2017 from each firm, according to people familiar with the discussions.

TRIBUNE MEDIA CEO PETER LIGUORI BEING REPLACED
Peter Liguori will step down as president and CEO of Tribune Media, the Chicago-based broadcast company announced Wednesday. Liguori, who shed Tribune's newspaper assets and doubled down on its cable network and TV stations during his four years at the helm, will leave in March, after the company's 2016 fourth-quarter and full-year earnings report.

FROM TV SHOWS, MOVIES TO MAGAZINES NOW OPRAH IS BUDDYING UP WITH KRAFT ON NEW FOOD VENTURE
Kraft Heinz and Winfrey announced Wednesday that they've teamed up on a joint culinary venture. Called Mealtime Stories, LLC, the brand seeks to "create a new line of food that will make real, nutritious products more accessible to everyone." In a statement, the company and the mogul said the brand's first offering will involve refrigerated products "across multiple categories."
AT&T BANKING ON TIME WARNER FOR MOBILE VIDEO FUTURE
AT&T has been preparing to do something like its proposed merger with Time Warner for a long time, according to CEO and Chairman Randall Stephenson. In October, AT&T reached an agreement to buy Time Warner for more than $85 billion. AT&T argues that Time Warner and its premium content, which includes HBO and CNN, would complement its distribution network, rather than create an unduly large giant in the media space.

POLITICO FOUNDER JIM VANDEHEI'S NEW MEDIA VENTURE 'AXIOS' GETS BOOST FROM THE USUAL SUSPECT, NBC
The site launched last week with a scroll-happy and highly readable presentation, not to mention a rather pivotal media partner in NBC News. NBC Universal is an investor in Axios and NBC News Chairman Andy Lack sits on the site’s board. As reported by the Wall Street Journal, NBC News is among a few partners — Business Insider and the Information are others — with which Axios is launching events. NBC Universal has invested $400 million in BuzzFeed and $200 million in Vox Media.

CBS HIT WITH SUIT OVER SUMNER REDSTONE
A CBS shareholder charges in a new legal filing that board members and CEO Les Moonves were “recklessly profligate” when they approved nearly $13 million in pay for one-time chairman Sumner Redstone, after it became clear that he was “incapacitated beyond recovery.”

DISNEY MAY OVERHAUL THE ENTIRE AD SALES OPERATIONS FOR ITS ABC CHANNELS
Disney is considering a revamp of how it sells some of its most popular outlets to Madison Avenue. Under one plan being discussed, the company would place a single executive in charge of advertising sales for ABC, Freeform and the various Disney entertainment cable networks.
McCLATCHY INSTALLS NEW CEO
McClatchy, publisher of the Sacramento Bee, announced late Wednesday that it’s replacing its CEO. Patrick Talamantes will be replaced by  Craig Forman, a private investor and entrepreneur. Forman is a current member of McClatchy’s board of directors.

FACEBOOK MAY HAVE JUST STUNTED SNAPCHAT'S GROWTH
Facebook Inc. hasn’t been shy about copying Snapchat, its smaller social-media rival. Now it’s unveiling the biggest and boldest clone so far: a feature resembling Snapchat’s Stories, directly within the Facebook application. Facebook’s adoption means the tool will be exposed to a global audience of 1.8 billion people, including many who haven’t yet been introduced to Snapchat. That has the potential to stunt the smaller company’s growth just as parent Snap Inc. readies an initial public offering, expected as soon as March.
SURFER MAGAZINE KILLS PRINT EDITION
The iconic magazine started Leroy Grannis, and Dick Graham will merge with her older sister, Surfer Magazine, on February 1, 2017. Surfing Magazine had never had an easy ride. In the 1960s, a few years after hitting the shelves, the publication lived rough times and nearly disappeared. Nevertheless, it survived five different ownerships from 1964 to 1979.

-Good Morning
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Your Media Morning: Rupert Murdoch's Sons Are Stepping Up, Indie Fashion Mags Are Doing Great, Facebook Goes After Snapchat Again Reviewed by Editor on Thursday, January 26, 2017 Rating: 5
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