Media Buzz

BuzzFeed Gambit Could Allow Stormy Daniels to Talk

“BuzzFeed may have found a legal opening to allow the porn actress Stormy Daniels to discuss her alleged relationship with President Donald Trump and a $130,000 payment she received just before the 2016 election as part of a nondisclosure agreement she is now trying to void,” Politico reports.

“The same Trump attorney who brokered the deal with Daniels, Michael Cohen, filed a libel suit in January against BuzzFeed and four of its staffers over publication of the so-called dossier compiling accurate, inaccurate and unproven allegations about Trump’s relationship with Russia.”

“Now, BuzzFeed is using Cohen’s libel suit as a vehicle to demand that Daniels preserve all records relating to her relationship with Trump, as well as her dealings with Cohen and the payment he has acknowledged arranging in 2016.”

Fox News Suddenly Focuses on Women as Sex Offenders

New York Times: “Instances of female teachers sexually abusing male students are rare. But stories on the subject have lately taken up a lot of space at FoxNews.com.”

“Through the first half of 2017, the site posted fewer than 20 stories on women accused of sex offenses. The new focus started on June 30, when FoxNews.com published an article on ‘the apparently increasing frequency of female teachers having sex with their young male students.’ Over the next six months the site posted some 98 articles on instances of sexual abuse allegedly committed by women, most of them teachers.”

Obama In Talks to Provide Shows for Netflix

Barack Obama “is in advanced negotiations with Netflix to produce a series of high-profile shows that will provide him a global platform after his departure from the White House,” the New York Times reports.

“Under terms of a proposed deal, which is not yet final, Netflix would pay Mr. Obama and his wife, Michelle, for exclusive content that would be available only on the streaming service, which has nearly 118 million subscribers around the world. The number of episodes and the formats for the shows have not been decided.”

Kushner Sought to Sell Newspaper to Trump’s Enemies

“Just days before heading to a West Wing job, Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, was secretly engaged in talks to sell his struggling news organization, the New York Observer, to Clinton megadonor and Univision chair Haim Saban and Hillary Clinton ally David Brock — a progressive media figure with aspirations to turn the news outlet into ‘the Breitbart of the left,'” BuzzFeed News reports.

Sinclair’s Media Bashing Promos Rankle Local Anchors

CNN: “‘This is so manipulative.’ That’s an anchor at a local TV station owned by Sinclair, describing the company’s latest mandate, a promotional campaign that sounds like pro-Trump propaganda. Internal documents call the new initiative an ‘anchor delivered journalistic responsibility message.’ But the staffers who shared the documents with CNN say the promos are inappropriate — yet another corporate infringement on local journalism.”

Fox News Plans Streaming Service for ‘Superfans’

New York Times: “On Tuesday, Fox News is set to announce Fox Nation, a stand-alone subscription service available without a cable package. The streaming service, expected to start by the end of the year, would focus primarily on right-leaning commentary, with original shows and cameos by popular personalities like Sean Hannity.”

Said Fox executive John Finley: “Fox Nation is designed to appeal to the Fox superfan. These are the folks who watch Fox News every night for hours at a time, the dedicated audience that really wants more of what we have to offer.”

BuzzFeed Sues DNC Over Trump Dossier

BuzzFeed is suing the DNC over its refusal to release information about how Russians hacked into its servers during the 2016 election, Vanity Fair reports.

The website, which published the Steele dossier alleging connections between President Trump and Russia, believes that the information would help it fend off a libel suit filed by Russian billionaire Aleksej Gubarev, who is named in the dossier. But the DNC says releasing information might make it vulnerable to more hacking.

The Coming Information Apocalypse

BuzzFeed News: “Aviv Ovadya saw early what many — including lawmakers, journalists, and Big Tech CEOs — wouldn’t grasp until months later: Our platformed and algorithmically optimized world is vulnerable — to propaganda, to misinformation, to dark targeted advertising from foreign governments — so much so that it threatens to undermine a cornerstone of human discourse: the credibility of fact.”

“But it’s what he sees coming next that will really scare the shit out of you.”

”That future, according to Ovadya, will arrive with a slew of slick, easy-to-use, and eventually seamless technological tools for manipulating perception and falsifying reality.”

Sinclair Seeks Political Donations from News Directors

“The nation’s largest TV station owner is gearing up to fight for deregulation, and it wants some of its own newsroom managers to join the effort,” the Washington Post reports.

“Sinclair Broadcast Group is asking its executives — including the news directors at its many stations — to contribute to its political action committee, a move that journalism ethics experts say is highly unusual and troubling.”