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Covering the pulse of New York media
Updated: 16 min 6 sec ago

SNL Head Writer Caps Off Busy Spring

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 21:00

In April, Saturday Night Live co-head writer Rob Klein got married to Food & Wine senior editor Lucy Madison. In May, he was back in his home state of Pennsylvania to address students at the Wyoming Valley West Middle School, as the guest speaker at the National Junior Honor Society induction ceremony.

The 34-year-old Klein has been an SNL writer for eight seasons, the last two as co-head writer alongside Colin Jost and Bryan Tucker. Per a report in the Scranton Times-Tribune, his May 21 speech included some good zingers:

\"The first thing I want to say to the students is I understand that young people today have a lot of distractions. You might spend a lot of time online, watching YouTube, playing Minecraft, playing games on your phone. But I really believe it’s so important, even with all those distractions, that you still carve out a few hours every night to watch some TV,\" Klein said, as the audience began to laugh.

Klein’s mother was formerly a guidance counselor for his local school district. After attending Wilkes-Barre Academy and Wyoming Valley West High School, Klein moved on to Harvard and the National Lampoon. The head writer also got some nice local ink recently in another Pennsylvania paper, the Times Leader.

As you might expect, Ms. Klein has her own, equally well-developed sense of humor. Ahead of the wedding, last fall, she penned an essay for Lucky magazine titled “First Person: ‘My Fiancé Hates My Favorite Pants’“:

Recently, chatting with Rob, I innocently suggested the pants as my outfit for a particularly special occasion on the horizon: our wedding. \"Sure,\" he said, smiling sweetly, calling my bluff. \"You’ll look great in anything.\" The man had learned his lesson: Never get between a woman and her favorite article of clothing. Satisfied by his response, I went out and bought an actual wedding dress instead. But the pants won’t feel entirely left out: I’m planning on wearing them to the afterparty.

Previously on FishbowlNY:
Colin Jost Trips Over Penis Joke

Categories: News

Work on Your Curve for the Guardian US

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 20:28

Guardian US coverage is wide and deep. Pulitzer prize-winning articles on illegal NSA snooping live alongside a chronicle of the history of animal photography, a day in the life of an art restorer and ideas on how to solve the NFL’s domestic violence problems.

Freelancers contribute to a fair portion of this coverage, and the arts, sports, opinion, money, business and features sections are all open to pitches. The fresher your idea is, the more likely it is to grab the attention of editors. Just make sure your pitch email is equally sparkling:

[Features editor Jessica] Reed subscribes to evergreen rules of pitching. “It’s the old industry saying: If an editor isn’t excited by your pitch after three lines, game over,” she says. Keep your pitch short, but use this brief space to grab the interests of editors and give them an idea of the tone of your pieces and potential word length. Include links to your best clips, and mention the publications you regularly work for.

For more, read: How To Pitch: Guardian US

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Categories: News

Forbes Names Angela Merkel ‘Most Powerful Woman’

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 18:30

German chancellor Angela Merkel can breathe easy — Forbes has announced that she matters. The magazine’s annual “100 Most Powerful Women in the World” list has Merkel earning the top spot, followed by Hillary ClintonMelinda GatesJanet Yellen and Mary Barra.

Oprah was the highest ranking woman in the media category, at 12. She was followed by Anna Wintour (28), Bonnie Hammer (52) and Donna Langley (58).

For more on Forbes’ Most Powerful Women list, click through.

Categories: News

Time Inc. Acquires FanSided

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 18:00

The price for a site that currently earns 15 million monthly unique visitors and over 50 million monthly page views was not disclosed. But the acquisition of FanSided by Time Inc. is a smart one.

From today’s announcement:

\"The FanSided business is an investment in a modern content strategy plus deeply engaged and passionate audiences,\" Time Inc. CEO Joe Ripp said. \"The entrepreneurial and agile FanSided leadership team is a great addition to our growing Sports Illustrated Group portfolio.\"

The acquisition also aligns with SI’s expansion into men’s lifestyle categories, such as fitness, adventure sports and the global sneaker community. Over the past year, the brand has launched nearly a dozen new editorial and digital products.

According to comScore, the SI Digital network had upwards of 24 million unique visitors in April, a 30% year-over-year growth over the same month last year. At this year’s NewFronts, Time Inc. announced a new video initiative, SI Films, which will develop video programming for all platforms and mediums.

Over on the FanSided end, here’s how a post from founder and CEO Adam Best‘s begins:

Loyal Fans and Readers,

When we founded FanSided, we were just two brothers/fans who felt our voices weren’t properly represented when it came to the teams and topics we loved. We believed that our fellow fans craved intelligent content crafted from their perspective. When you are a fan, a real die-hard fan of something, that is part of your identity. You simply cannot get enough info and, perhaps more importantly, insight around your favorite teams and topics. We wanted to create a brand of content unafraid of adopting the fan POV. We’ve always been unabashedly fanatic about the categories we cover, and we always will be. That is why FanSided was conceived: to side with the fans.

Categories: News

Gigaom to Relaunch in August

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 16:44

Gigaom is getting another shot. Knowingly Corp, an Austin-based startup, has purchased the tech site that suddenly shuttered in March, and plans to relaunch it August 15.

Gigaom was founded in 2006 by Om Malik. It was shut down in March because it didn’t make any money. In a post at the time, the site’s editors put it a little more politely by stating that Gigaom “became unable to pay its creditors in full.”

Knowingly was founded last year by Byron Reese. In an announcement, Reese said he was “excited to be a chapter of the Gigaom story.” Here’s hoping the new book has a happier ending.

Categories: News

Majority of Highest Paid CEOs Work in Media

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 15:45

It’s a good time to be a media maven. According to a study by The Associated Press, six out of the 10 highest paid American executives work in the media industry.

David Zaslav, head of Discovery Communications, is the highest paid CEO. Zaslav raked in roughly $156 million last year. Following Zaslav were CBS’ Les Moonves, Viacom’s Sumner Redstone, Disney’s Bob Iger, Comcast’s Brian Roberts and Time Warner’s Jeffrey Bewkes.

One reason media execs do so well is that the talent—actors, directors, etc.—get paid handsomely. When workers have a fat paycheck, their bosses have an even bigger one.

Another reason media CEOs are paid so well is that they are white dudes. It always helps to be a white man in America. If you have a chance to be a white man, you should do it.

Categories: News

Illustrator Tom Richmond Bags Another Reuben Award

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 15:30

TomRichmondReubenMinnesota-based cartoonist Tom Richmond has a long history with the National Cartoonists Society’s annual Reuben Awards, starting in 1999. From the artist’s bio:

Attending his first NCS Reuben Awards weekend in San Antonio, he eagerly brought his portfolio with him to show MAD editor Nick Meglin, a longtime NCS member. His reaction was a resounding yawn. Not deterred thanks to a healthy dose of you-can-do-it attitude and the fact that he spends most of his time in his own fantasy world, Tom focused on further developing his work in order to break into MAD.

Subsequent showings of his revised portfolio resulted in more encouraging reactions. In one showing, long-time MAD artist and current art director Sam Viviano actually cleared his throat before yawning while reviewing Tom’s portfolio! Tom didn’t sleep for a week from the excitement. Not even that pesky restraining order bothered him.

Richmond would go on to win divisional Reubens, serve as president of the organization and be named Cartoonist of the Year in 2012. Over the weekend, he bagged another Silver divisional Reuben Award, this time in the Magazine Feature/Magazine Illustration category.

The winning illustration is from MAD Issue #531 (February 2015) cover feature \"The MAD 20 Dumbest People, Events and Things of 2014.\" Richmond and writer Desmond Devlin’s treatment of the standoff involving Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy came in at #14 on the MAD list, right behind “CNN’s Endless Flight Coverage” and Chris Christie’s Traffic Scandal.”

Full list of the 2014 NCS/Reuben winners here.
[Image via:]

Categories: News

Changes at Field & Stream

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 15:26

Field & Stream has made one promotion and one hire. Details are below.

Colin Kearns has been promoted from deputy editor to senior deputy editor. Kearns has been with Field & Stream since 2008.   Jared Sullivan joins as associate online editor and associate editor for Field & Stream, as well as an associate online editor for Outdoor Life. He comes to the magazine from Sporting Classics, where he served as online and associate editor.
Categories: News

FishbowlNY Newsstand: Your Morning at a Glance

Tue, 05/26/2015 - 15:00



(Images: Newseum)

Categories: News

War Memorial Cartoon Mints Canada’s ‘Journalist of the Year’

Mon, 05/25/2015 - 16:25

BruceMacKinnonPodiumPublished the day after the fatal October 22 shooting on Ottawa’s Parliament Hill of Corporal Nathan Cirillo, a reservist guarding the National War Memorial, the Halifax Chronicle Herald editorial cartoon imagined the Memorial’s bronze World War I figures coming to life to comfort Cirillo. Upon publication, the image rocketed to the top of Reddit and Imgur and was shown in coverage on CNN, Fox News and elsewhere.

Friday night in Toronto, the cartoonist responsible for the image, Bruce MacKinnon, accepted the first-ever Journalist of the Year Award from Canada’s National Newspaper Awards. The Toronto Press Club, which has been giving out honors since 1949, relied on a panel of three past female winners to choose the winner from this year’s 22 category honorees.

From MacKinnon’s weekend Facebook post:

My first thought was if I were any one of the hard-working five-star journalists in the room that night, I’d be protesting on the street right now. To be singled out from that group, by a panel of former NNA laureates, is both baffling and incredibly humbling to me. But as a cartoonist in a country with such a strong history of editorial cartooning, it made me extremely proud and hopeful for the future of our profession. I am grateful to the NNAs for recognizing Canadian editorial cartooning in such a profound way and I hope it sends a message to newspapers about the value in hiring cartoonists.

At the end of his acceptance speech, MacKinnon was presented with a gift box, inside of which was a gold-sequined Fedora. The hat was suggested by an NNA member as the symbol going forward for each year’s Journalist of the Year Award. MacKinnon has one small suggestion in that regard: put a “Press” card in the band of future golden Fedoras. ‘I don’t think you could find a more singular icon for the tradition of newspaper journalism,’ he wrote.

A portion of the reprint orders for the October 23, 2014 cartoon are being donated by The Chronicle Herald to Cirillo’s family. Next year, MacKinnon will mark his 30th year with the Nova Scotia daily.
[Screen grab via: YouTube]

Categories: News

Maureen Dowd Learns a Thing or Two About Uber

Sun, 05/24/2015 - 18:45

UberFeedbackThis is hilarious.

During a recent visit to the west coast that included Los Angeles, Maureen Dowd tapped her trusty Uber App after exiting the Sunset Tower hotel on The Strip, only to be puzzled by the fact that a displayed group of UberX vehicles in the immediate vicinity kept going. The driver who eventually picked her up had a possible explanation:

“Do you know why no one wanted to pick you up?” he asked. “Because you have a low rating.” (Uber drivers see your rating once they accept the request and then can cancel.)

I was shocked. Blinded by the wondrous handiness of Uber, I had missed the fact that while I got to rate them, they got to rate me back.

Revealing that I had only 4.2 stars, my driver continued to school me. “You don’t always come out right away,” he said, sternly, adding that I would have to work hard to be more appealing if I wanted to get drivers to pick me up.

Uber began to feel less like a dependable employee and more like an irritated boyfriend.

Ha ha – e.g., UberEx. In the column, Dowd goes on to draw a hilarious analogy between using Uber and working to produce trending New York Times articles. Read the full piece here.
[H/T: @TheBenBergman; image via]

Categories: News

Mashable’s Search for a Singapore Editor Continues

Sun, 05/24/2015 - 18:00

Mashable executive editor and chief content officer Jim Roberts connected this past week from Singapore for an interesting Q&A with mUmBRELLA Asia’s Robin Hicks. Mashable plans to open a Singapore office in the third quarter of 2015, and Roberts has been in the country interviewing candidates for the local editor position.

Roberts said his site already gets approximately two million monthly unique visitors from Southeast Asia (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines). Mashable has a budget to hire two journalists for the Singapore office, starting with the editor:

\"We’re only halfway through the search, but if I leave Singapore without a few strong candidates I will have failed. We’ve talked to several people, and I’ve been impressed with who I’ve seen so far. They all come from very different backgrounds with very different skills sets, but I’ve been very encouraged by the caliber and candidates seem to have the sensibilities and mindset that we’re looking for…\"

\"I’m looking for a lot of [editor] qualities – a sensible, responsible journalist with a great deal of creativity; the ability to think beyond text-based journalism; a keen sense for photography and video and how it can all be mixed together; a strong command of social media, and how they present themselves. It’s clearly not just a job for just any journalist.\"

Roberts told Hicks he was also pleasantly surprised by the level of Mashable awareness among Singapore journalists, noting \"it’s not fake knowledge\" (e.g., that kind of \"Oh yeah, I love Mashable…\" blarney some job candidates might try to get away with). In the Q&A, Roberts also addresses the minor backlash that has greeted Mashable’s shift away from its original tech-centric focus.

The editorial side of Mashable currently encompasses 65 journalists, with 50 of these based in New York and aided by the news side’s 25 or so interns. Roberts’ next-level site goal, with help from international expansions, is to achieve 1.5 million daily unique visitors. Last month, mUmBRELLA Asia marked its own two-year anniversary.
[Photo of Singapore skyline:]

Categories: News

Tisch Graduates, De Niro is Talking to You

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 16:45

Robert De Niro grew up near the Tisch School of the Arts. He has made eight feature films with Martin Scorsese, Class of 1964, who met editor Thelma Schoonmaker at Tisch.

On Friday, De Niro followed 2014 Tisch Commencement speaker Scorsese with a wonderful pep talk of his own. It’s De Niro’s best performance since Silver Linings Playbook, full of memorable passages like this one:

“On this day of triumphant graduation, a new day is opening to you. A door of lifetime rejection. It’s inevitable. It’s what graduates call the real world…”

“How do you cope with it? I hear that Valium and Vicodin work. Well, I don’t know… You can’t be too relaxed and do what we do. And you don’t want to block the pain too much. Without the pain, what would we talk about? Though I would make an exception for having a couple of drinks, if hypothetically you had to speak to a thousand graduates and their families at a Commencement ceremony.”

Rejection may sting, De Niro admitted, but he believes that it very rarely has anything to do with the person pitching, auditioning, pleading. He then went on to recall his extensive auditioning process for the 1973 sports drama Bang The Drum Slowly.

The actor also told graduates that as he looked out at the audience, he could students wearing custom Tisch T-shirts rather than the traditional cap and gown. On the back, it would read “Rejection, it isn’t personal,” and on the front, “Next!” And that’s how he ended his speech – with a “Next!”
Previously on FishbowlNY:
An Epic Film Collaboration That Began Five Decades Ago at NYU

Categories: News

A Tale of Two Musicals

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 12:00

JillSantorielloPicThe Great Recession did a number on Broadway musical A Tale of Two Cities, which closed in the fall of 2008 after a total of 101 preview and regular performances. But the musical has found new life away from The Great White Way.

The Dickens adaptation has been staged three times in Seoul, South Korea and performed in Germany, England, Ireland and Japan. Another full-scale version has just begun this weekend in Wichita, Texas, with play author Jill Santoriello (pictured), an Ohio University journalism alum, telling the Wichita Falls Times-Record that she will be in the audience for this afternoon’s 2:00 p.m. matinee. Her musical is also popular with students, having been staged last month by a Pennsylvania high school and booked for Japan Youth Theatre run this summer run in Osaka.

If all goes well, we will be much more from the New York-based Santoriello. Her new musical project, It Happened in Key West, is based on the very strange 1930s true tale of Carl Tanzler (a.k.a. Count Carl Von Cosel), an X-ray technician at a military hospital who fell in love with 22-year-old Cuban patient Elena Hoyos and tried unsuccessfully to cure her. From

Von Cosel became so obsessed with his morbid love affair that he secretly visited Elena’s tomb every night bringing gifts and flowers, and according to some accounts, he installed a telephone in her tomb so he could talk with her. He believed that she could communicate with him through voice and song.

After two years Von Cosel removed Elena’s remains from her tomb and took them to a make-shift laboratory he had built inside the wingless fuselage of an old airplane behind the Marine hospital. There he began work on Elena’s corpse by wiring it together and using wax, plaster of paris, and glass eyes to restore her to \"life.\" When he learned that the military planned to move the old airplane fuselage, he secretly moved Elena’s corpse to his house on Flagler Street. Here he dressed Elena in a wedding dress and often slept with her as his wife.

Some elements of the story are unverified, but as you can imagine, there was lots of sensational coverage when it happened, in the Miami Herald and beyond. For those interested, there is this 2003 book about the Von Cosel case, by Tom Swicegood.
[Photo by: Carol Rosegg]

Categories: News

Student Editor’s Plagiarism Accusations Lead to Reporter Suspension

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 05:20

UniversityPressLogoThings can escalate very quickly when the \"P\" word is thrown down. What’s interesting in this case is that it was only after Florida Atlantic University student newspaper EIC Emily Bloch published her accusations that the Boca Raton Tribune took action. The community newspaper, published bi-weekly during the summer and weekly the rest of the year, had failed to properly respond to contact Monday from a representative for Bloch’s newspaper, the University Press, and a call from Bloch herself Thursday.

In her article, the FAU student editor accused Tribune contributor Fred Hamilton of plagiarizing portions of a story she wrote several weeks ago. After some additional digging, she documented two other instances of apparent plagiarism involving The Daily Beast and the South Florida Sun Sentinel. From an item by Rise Miami News:

Boca Raton Tribune publisher Douglas Heizer told Rise Miami News that the writer would not allowed to contribute to the paper moving forward and that an internal investigation has been launched. Depending on the findings of that investigation, all of Hamilton’s published stories could be taken down from the newspaper’s website…

\"She brought up very good points,\"Heizer said. \"We want to teach young people good journalism, and this not the right way.\"

Bloch’s May 8 article involved the disclosure by Boca Raton PD of an alleged gang rape on campus in April. Hamilton’s related article has been removed.

Categories: News

Media Minutiae

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 23:00

TVNewser: Fox Business Network’s senior correspondent Charlie Gasparino says Fox News is good because it’s “less predictable.” This is true, because viewers never do know when they’ll make stuff up. It could happen at any moment! Fun!

FishbowlDC: Yes, that’s really Hillary Clinton on LinkedIn and no, she will not add you to her network.

AgencySpy: Leo Burnett has won the opportunity to convince consumers that shopping at Marshalls isn’t depressing.

Categories: News

NY Jobs: SiriusXM, Landor, 401kWire

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 22:10

This week, SiriusXM is hiring a senior analyst for its finance department, while Landor needs a senior experience designer. 401kWire is seeking a reporter, and DBOX is on the hunt for a production artist. Get the scoop on these openings below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.

Senior Analyst, Finance SiriusXM (New York, NY) Senior Experience Designer Landor (New York, NY) Reporter 401kWire (New York, NY) Production Artist DBOX (New York, NY) Staff Writer Samuel Christensen Law Firm (New York, NY)

Find more great NY jobs on the Mediabistro job board. Looking to hire? Tap into our network of talented media pros and post a risk-free job listing. For real-time openings and employment news, follow @MBJobPost.

Categories: News

Entertainment Weekly Launches Paywall

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 21:39

Screen Shot 2015-05-22 at 3.37.17 PMThink carefully before viewing Entertainment Weekly’s online content, like a slideshow of the “26 scariest pop culture clowns.” Is it worth paying for? Before answering, consider — you are (probably) not a child, so clowns are not scary. Also, EW has launched a paywall.

According to Politico,’s paywall is metered, like the New York Times’ paywall. Nonregistered readers can read up to 10 stories per month, while “registered nonsubscribers” can read up to 15 articles per month.

For complete digital access to, you’ll have to pay $1.99 per month or $20 per year. If you’re a EW fan, that’s really not much at all. So pay up. Or ask your parents to.

Categories: News

Lester Holt Heads Home to Accept Honorary Degree

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 21:25

LesterHoltNBCThirty-six years after leaving California State University, Sacramento as an incomplete, the NBC Nightly News anchor will be back on campus Saturday evening to accept an Honorary Doctorate. He will also give the Commencement address to 813 students graduating from the College of Arts and Letters.

From Robert D’Avila’s report in the Sacramento Bee:

Lester Holt Sr. was concerned in 1979 when he learned that his son was planning to drop out of California State University, Sacramento, to work at a San Francisco radio station. But he wasn’t as worried as his wife, June. \"She predicted poverty and failure,\" he said with a laugh.

But the Rancho Cordova couple gave their blessing, firm in the belief that Lester Jr. would go far with hard work, talent and a likeable personality in his chosen field of broadcast journalism.

Holt interned while in high school for KCRA Channel 3. The radio station he went to work for in the Bay Area as a part-time DJ, KRAK 103.1 FM, is today an AM ESPN sports radio station.
[Photo courtersy: NBC]

Categories: News

Daily News Gets Bid from Jimmy Finkelstein

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 21:12

The New York Daily News now has two bidders — John Catsimatidis and a group led by Jimmy Finkelstein.

If Finkelstein takes over, say goodbye to the Daily News as you know it. According to The New York Post, Finkelstein has plans to change the tabloid into a digital-only production in an effort to eventually turn a profit. That’s understandable, if not depressing. What is New York with only one tabloid? Chicago? Gross.

Catsimatidis—long considered the frontrunner to win (lose?) the Daily News—has no plans to shutter the print version. “I hope they sell it to someone who lets it survive,” Catsimatidis told the Post. By “someone” he means himself.

Categories: News


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