1:37 pm Jun. 27, 2012
The Lineup collects the media stories, big and small, that are on our radar each day.
"Getting harder to find News Corp.ers who believe split *doesn't* get approved today."
That's Peter Kafka, a reporter for AllThings D (which is owned by News Corp.), tweeting earlier today about the anticipated bifurcation of the scandal-rocked company's entertainment and publishing arms, which was first reported by The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday and is expected to be decided one way or the other by tomorrow.
It's become the biggest media story of the week, and as such, it's become a little hard to keep track of all the reportage and commentary being published about it.
Some links you should catch up on are below.
The New York Times: "The possibility signals a sharp reversal in the thinking of about his $53 billion media conglomerate. For years, investors and senior News Corporation executives have pressed for a spinoff of the newspapers, but Mr. Murdoch, a newspaperman at heart who built his company from a single paper in Adelaide, Australia, has consistently rejected those proposals."
NYT/Media Decoder: "As News Corporation confirmed that it was considering splitting off its publishing assets into a separate, publicly traded company, top editors and publishers at many of the company’s newspapers arrived in New York from several continents to discuss the proposed separation."
Bloomberg: "News Corp. (NWSA) hired Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) for financial advice on its plans to break up the company, according to two people with knowledge of the situation."
Bloomberg: "[News Corp. C.O.O. Chase] Carey and CFO David DeVoe were key to convincing Mr. Murdoch that a split would result in a better valuation for the entertainment group while also allowing him to keep control of his newspaper business, said a person familiar with the matter. Mr. Murdoch resisted the breakup idea until a few months ago, said the person. One of his concerns was that the newspaper business wasn't strong enough to stand on its own and needed more technology investment, another person said."
Ad Age: "Dividing News Corp. could help get entertainment assets such as Twentieth Century Fox, Fox Broadcasting and Fox News out from under the various drags of the publishing unit. ... But where would that leave News Corp. newspapers like The Wall Street Journal and the New York Post?"
Adweek: "Already, layoff jitters are spreading throughout the print business, which includes the vaunted Wall Street Journal plus papers in the U.K. and Australia, where properties are already preparing for cuts."
“There’s a lot of worry about that because all the publishing assets have been protected” by the rest of the company, one Dow Jones staffer fretted.
Peter Kafka: "A split would leave News Corp. COO Chase Carey running the unit that houses the film and TV business, just as he’s doing today (though it’s possible Murdoch would retain his CEO title at one or both companies). The intrigue is about the other half. The logical choice would be Robert Thomson, a longtime Murdoch lieutenant who runs The Wall Street Journal and is editor-in-chief at Dow Jones."
Felix Salmon: "Up until now, Murdoch has never really needed to worry very much about his newspapers’ profitability, because the rest of his empire was throwing off such enormous profits. That’s going to change."
Michael Wolff: "It is almost impossible to imagine that a stand-alone public print company would not have to quickly cut costs and dispose of those assets that do not have a credible path to profitability. Indeed, for each of News Corp's newspapers, protected so long by the company's vast diversification, being spun off, instead of sold to enthusiastic bidders, might be their worse fate."
Ryan Chittum: It’s worth noting that this is a financial move that will leave Murdoch’s political power intact. Rupert and family will continue to control both companies and he will continue to leverage the power of one for the benefit of the other. If Murdoch’s doing this now, after resisting pleas for years, it’s surely because he thinks this is the best way to preserve that power.
Ken Doctor: "Unleashing the bigger business from the annoyances of news simply lets News Corp. double down on its five-continent plan to dominate entertainment programming. Let’s take a brief look at the newsonomics of what the News Corp. split may mean to its newspapers."
In other news...
Report: Savannah Guthrie has been offered Ann Curry's job. [The Hollywood Reporter]
Suspended Politico reporter Joe Williams is blaming a conservative media "smear campaign." [HuffPost]
The Wall Street Journal fired an intern for making up quotes. [Talking Biz News]
Glenn Hall has been named managing editor of Glenn Beck's The Blaze. [Jim Romenesko]
The latest discontent at Patch. [Jim Romenesko]
How to tell when Matt Winkler wrote a Bloomberg headline and/or lede. [Jim Romenesko]
Farhad Majoo takes BuzzFeed to task for what he describes as viral photo pilfering. [Slate]
The new era of Gawker comments. [The New York Observer]
How awful does this Cat Marnell character sound? [The New York Observer]
More by this author:
- 'Village Voice' fires Michael Musto in yet another round of cuts
- 'New York Post' buyouts focus on 'loyal soldiers ... highest paid'