At the top of this weekend’s New York Times Magazine cover story on Tom Brady, Mark Leibovich maps out the personal X’s and professional O’s that led him to finally score a profile of the NFL’s most frequent big game quarterback:
Last July, a few weeks before the New England Patriots started training camp, I got a call from Donald Yee, the agent in Los Angeles who has represented Tom Brady since he entered the NFL in 2000. It had been four years since I first told Yee that I was interested in writing about Brady, even though I typically cover politics.
I grew up in the Boston suburbs, rooted for the Patriots as a kid and even possessed vague memories of watching the team play at Fenway Park, one of their homes before they settled into the nowhere-land of Foxborough, MA, in 1971. My friend Josh and I once wrote a letter to the team’s young quarterback, Jim Plunkett, inviting him to dinner at Josh’s house. (Plunkett never responded.)
Yee offered Leibovich a lunch meeting with Brady, that same summer week. The day of the meeting, the reporter received an email with the subject line: \"Tom Brady Here.\" In short order, Leibovich was in the back of taxi cab, headed to 23rd and Madison for almonds, water in a blue bottle and conversation with a subject who never slouches.
For the piece, Leibovich also spoke to Brady’s father and the quarterback’s ever-present personal body coach Alex Guerrero. Read the full piece here.
The only American destination on the list is Houston, at #8, beating out a number of other seemingly more logical U.S.A. candidates. Internationally, it’s the same; the magazine has tackled an impossible task and made it worse. For example, many are criticizing the fact that for the brief blurb about number one party city Dublin, the magazine highlights a tourist-trap bar. On the National Geographic Facebook page, the negative comments outweigh the positive by a ratio of about 10-to-1. Here are just a few relating to the American entry:
Alan Foster: I’m from Texas. Houston really must have been drunk before you got there.
Bill Hanna: Houston before Bangkok? Is this a joke?
Joe Garrick: Houston over New Orleans or Vegas? This is bupkis.
Jackie L. Taylor: Houston? Really?
Jim Hoffman: Houston????
Houston FOX-TV reporter Ashley Johnson hit the streets to report on the ranking, one which had her news desk co-anchor Chris Stipes somewhat stunned. Hilariously, her report was done in broad daylight. Extra deadpan points to the afternoon businessman reveler who told the reporter: “Oh, it’s dynamic. We’ve got oil and gas, and we’ve got oil and gas, and we’ve got oil and gas.”
TVNewser: The Today show has a Super Bowl ad because… Well, we have no idea.
FishbowlDC: Melinda Henneberger, Jennifer Epstein, and Phil Mattingly have joined Bloomberg Politics. Buy them a shot or five tonight.
GalleyCat: The creator of Angry Birds is going to publish books. Hey, might as well!
We’ve only just begun 2015, but it seems as though we’re going to see some massive hiring sprees in the digital media space. Both Mashable and Business Insider raise cash — $17 million and $25 million, respectively — and plan to put a good portion of that money into expansion. The number of new staffers could reach 100 at each publication, although some of those positions will be added internationally, as they look to expand their reach beyond the United States. Gawker Media, which spent much of 2014 expanding its editorial roster, isn’t slowing down either, raising $15 million in debt. If you can get it, why not do so?…
Modern Farmer is dead; long live Modern Farmer. The hip farming magazine, thought to be getting sent out to the pasture after its two remaining paid staffers walked out a few weeks ago, signs former Country Living editor-in-chief Sarah Gray Miller… Harper’s Bazaar poaches Aeriel Brown from Entertainment Weekly to be deputy photography director… Nylon’s editor-in-chief Michelle Lee adds head of brand strategy to her business card. The role of an EIC in 2015 is changing… Ariel Foxman takes over as editorial director of InStyle and People StyleWatch. He had been editor of the former publication. That means StyleWatch’s editor Susan Kaufman is gone… National Journal recruits John B. Judis as senior writer. He had been senior editor at The New Republic… Read More
Much respect to The Daily Beast’s yelling about its exclusive that turned out to be wrong, but the Associated Press won Twitter today.
The staffer who sent these Groundhog Day tweets deserves raise. No, we’re not going to write that again.
Keep up-to-date with the latest FishbowlNY news. Click here to sign up for the daily newsletter, bringing you our articles each afternoon directly to your inbox.
Many folks will not have heard of Swedish-based company Aspiro before today. But it’s a whole new ballgame now.
Per a report by UPI writer Veronica Linares, Jay Z has tendered an offer of $56 million to acquire the overseas firm:
Aspiro offers a subscription service called Tidal in the the U.S. that allows users to stream “HiFi quality audio,” magazines and video content. Jay Z – whose real name is Shawn Corey Carter – reportedly
plans to make the purchase through one of his side ventures, Project Panther Bidco.
“The recent developments in the entertainment industry, with the migration to media streaming, offers great potential for increased entertainment consumption and an opportunity for artists to further promote their music,” said a statement released by Project Panther.
Streaming Media AS, which owns three-quarters of Aspiro, will be recommending to shareholders that the Jay Z offer.[Screen grab via: aspiro.com]
A couple Revolving Door items for you this afternoon, involving O, The Oprah Magazine and Bloomberg. Details are below.Julia Fry has been named O’s associate publisher of advertising. She is succeeding Maureen Mooney, who will be shifted to national director, sales and business development. Fry comes to the magazine from Condé Nast Traveler. Tracy Alloway is joining Bloomberg Media as executive editor of markets coverage. Alloway most recently worked at The Financial Times as its US financial correspondent, focusing on markets and Wall Street.
Starting this weekend, LA will be spitting out its own version of girls. To HBO and Brian Williams‘ daughter Allison, it is answering with Snapchat and Steven Spielberg‘s daughter Sasha.
From an exclusive report by our sister site The Hollywood Reporter:
Literally Can’t Even comes from writers Sasha Spielberg and Emily Goldwyn, the daughters of Steven Spielberg and John Goldwyn, respectively.
The series stars the friends and writing partners as comedic versions of themselves — Spielberg recently single after a long relationship and Goldwyn embarking on a six-month cleanse — and follows them on a series of misadventures in Los Angeles.
The series debuts tomorrow, january 31, with each episode clocking in at a lot less than a Girls chapter. Under five minutes. You can find the show on Snapchat’s Snap Channel, part of the overall Discover initiative announced earlier this week.[Pictured, left to right, courtesy Snapchat: Goldwyn, Spielberg and Rylee Ebsen]
In the latest and perhaps most dramatic sign of just how much the New York Daily News is following in the footsteps of UK’s Daily Mail and betting on the profit margins of a Web-driven international purview, Joe Pompeo has the scoop on a sad, symbolic retrenchment:
There are plans to close down the Brooklyn, Bronx and Queens bureaus in the coming weeks, sources with knowledge of the matter told Capital New York, in a move that one insider described as the “end of an era.”
The good news: The remaining 10 or so reporters and editors still devoted to the boroughs will not be let go, but rather redeployed to other areas of the organization, like the Web team, city desk or courthouses, the sources said. For instance, the News will now have a couple reporters combing through lawsuits full-time in Queens and the Bronx.
Another wrinkle to all this, from our end, is that every time we’ve lately visited the NYDN site, we’ve noticed just how much entertainment and celebrity items dominate the “Most Read” articles hit parade. In other words, we live in a news cycle now where it’s way more about JLo than Castle Hill.
Pompeo got a statement from managing editor Rob Moore when he contacted the paper. Read those comments here.
Bon Appétit has made a few changes to its editorial team. Details are below.Julia Kramer has been named senior editor. Kramer was most recently an associate restaurant editor for the magazine. Amiel Stanek has been promoted to assistant editor. He most recently served as assistant to editor-in-chief Adam Rapoport. Chris Morocco is returning to the magazine as a senior food editor. He previously worked at Real Simple and Food & Wine. He begins February 9.
DMG Media, publisher Daily Mail and MailOnline.com, has purchased Elite Daily. Elite Daily, as most of you know, is your worst Facebook friend’s favorite site. It publishes mostly mindless “sharable” articles aimed at millennials.
Despite our thoughts on Elite Daily, the site has plenty of fans. According to ComScore, it gets about 74 million unique visits a month. Also, 70 percent of its visitors fall in that coveted 18 to 34 year age range.
David Arabov, Elite Daily’s CEO, was obviously excited about the deal. “This is the next step in our development as a media company for and by millennials and will position us to deliver millennials the content they desire on an international scale,” he said in an announcement.
This week, Sirius XM Radio is hiring a senior copywriter, while New York Media needs an editorial director for Vulture. The New York Times is seeking a director of product for its games department, and Enstars.com is on the hunt for a senior editor. Get the scoop on these openings below, and find additional just-posted gigs on Mediabistro.Senior Copywriter Sirius XM Radio (New York, NY) Editorial Director, Vulture New York Media (New York, NY) Director of Product, Games The New York Times (New York, NY) Senior Editor Enstars.com (New York, NY) Circulation Marketing Manager The Week and Mental Floss (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.
Craig, then 23, explains how she had left New York City for Europe in the spring of 1951 and met photographer Ruth Orkin in Florence just the night before the famous shot of her walking down the street, surrounded by admiring Italian men, was taken by Orkin. She also comments on, ahem, the most notable of those admiring men:
Oh, and that poor soul touching himself? I was used to it. It was almost like a good luck sign for the Italian man, making sure the family jewels were intact. When it was first published, that was occasionally airbrushed out but I would never consider it to be a vulgar gesture.
My expression is not one of distress, that was just how I stalked around the city. I saw myself as Beatrice of Dante’s Divine Comedy. You had to walk with complete assurance and maintain a dignity at all times. The last thing you would do would be to look them in the eye and smile. I did not want to encourage them. This image has been interpreted in a sinister way but it was quite the opposite. They were having fun and so was I.
Different times. And while the nightly hotel rate Craig and Orkin were paying n Florence at the time ($1) sound ridiculous today, the potential photo licensing fee from a New York newspaper ($15) does not. Today, thanks to Shutterstock and other services, websites are often paying incrementally less than that. In the end, the picture ran in 1952 in Cosmopolitan.
Orkin, who passed away in 1985, was an adventurer from the word go. From her biography:
Orkin was the only child of Mary Ruby, a silent-film actress, and Samuel Orkin, a manufacturer of toy boats called Orkin Craft. She grew up in Hollywood in the heyday of the 1920s and 1930s. At the age of 10, she received her first camera, a 39 cent Univex. She began by photographing her friends and teachers at school. At 17-years-old, she took a monumental bicycle trip across the United States from Los Angeles to New York City to see the 1939 World’s Fair, and she photographed along the way.
Click here to see the photo, read the rest.[Logo via: guardian.com]
Now that Mitt Romney told everyone he’s not running for president, The Daily Beast has some backtracking and explaining to do. This morning, the site published a piece declaring that Romney would run. There was no grey area; Mitt was 100 percent in.
The Daily Beast’s Twitter account then went on a rampage, screaming about its “exclusive” (100 percent wrong) report:
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) January 30, 2015
NEW: Romney at 11AM will tell donors of his intention to explore another presidential run. http://t.co/AIpcIYOUqQ
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) January 30, 2015
Another reason Mitt’s running: Jeb is a joke in Romneyland http://t.co/OWH9676jMi
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) January 30, 2015
To recap: WRONG, wrong and wrong.
That’s pretty embarrassing. If you’re going to pound your chest about an exclusive report, you better be right. Or at least kind of right. Or be able to see right from a nearby hotel room.
The site has now deleted its “Romney Will Run” article and replaced it with text saying that their initial report was incorrect. Nice try! Here’s the text from the Daily Beast’s original piece:
Mitt Romney will call senior donors at 11 a.m. ET Friday to give them ‘an update’ on his campaign plans. Sources have told The Daily Beast that the former Massachusetts governor will announce his intention to explore a third run for the White House. Romney and his senior aides believe he is the best placed candidate to defeat Hillary Clinton. In a memo sent by Romney to his inner circle Thursday, he highlighted three reasons he should run: He thinks he’s the only qualified Republican in the field, polling is favorable to a win, and he thinks he can do better as a campaigner in 2016. Romney had originally intended to wait until later in the cycle but the bullish entry of Jeb Bush into the field encouraged him to jump early.
Huh. The Daily Beast might want to follow up with those “sources.” And what about that memo? Did that even exist?
So far, the only comment on the huge blunder comes from Noah Shachtman, The Daily Beast’s executive editor. He tweeted “We had what we thought were strong sources saying Romney was in. They were wrong. But it’s on us.” Hey, finally we have an accurate statement!
The Daily Beast still looks awful for deleting its “report” instead of adding a correction and explanation. That’s Reporting 101. You know, like waiting to publish a news piece until you’re absolutely sure it’s correct.
Here’s a rather unfortunate coincidence. One of this morning’s lead items on AOL tech blog Joystiq is a report about Sega Sammy laying off hundreds of employees. And per an official announcement coming shortly, the same is happening at Joystiq’s parent AOL.
According to TechCrunch’s Ingrid Lunden, whose solid internal sources we wrote about earlier, AOL is going to announce layoffs of around 150 people, mostly in sales. They are also going to dovetail two blogs with huge Twitter and reader followings:
As part of the reorganization, AOL is also consolidating some websites. Gaming site Joystiq and Apple news site TUAW are both being folded into Engadget, and AOL Autos is being folded into Autoblog.
In her latest column, New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan addressed the paper eliminating its race/ethnicity beat.
In a memo earlier this week, the Times announced that Tanzina Vega — its only reporter on the beat — was moving to the Metro desk. We asked the simple and obvious question: Why do this now, when it seems we need this more than ever?
Sullivan spoke to executive editor Dean Baquet, who said the move was “not a cosmic decision about how we cover race” and that he hadn’t decided what to do with the beat. Susan Chira, an assistant managing editor, said it would be a mistake to keep the race beat confined to one person. “We all have to raise the issues and discuss it through a wide array of topics – housing, culture, school desegregation,” explained Chira.
While that’s true, there is no harm in keeping Vega on the beat while stressing that reporters need to keep race and ethnicity as a focus point in their coverage. The Times can do both, but it’s not. That’s a poor decision.
For her part, Sullivan offered a more neutral take on the situation:
While it seems counterintuitive to increase and improve race coverage by discontinuing the race-and-ethnicity beat, the proof will be in the stories and the coverage ahead… But I hope the editors are right. The historical moment looms large. It demands great coverage from The Times on race.