Morning Media Newsfeed: Clippers Lose Sponsors | Mockingbird To Go Digital | Al Jazeera Sues Egypt

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Sponsors Have Begun to Abandon the Clippers (PRNewser)
The controversy behind the allegedly racist remarks made by L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling has the biggest names behind the Clippers making their way toward the exits. Mediaite State Farm Insurance became the first sponsor to pull its support from the Clippers Monday morning, following audiotape released by TMZ Saturday that allegedly revealed Sterling going on a racist tirade. WSJ More than a half dozen other sponsors of the Clippers, including Kia Motors, Virgin America, Red Bull, Aquahydrate, Mercedez-Benz, Corona and CarMax, also distanced themselves from the team Monday. While some advertisers sponsor the NBA, other brands sponsor individual teams — some advertisers do both. Sports marketing experts suggest that team sponsorship agreements with a big-market team like the Clippers could range anywhere from $100,000 to over $2 million a year, depending on what is included in the marketing package as well as if the advertiser is given category exclusivity. Variety According to new statements, the advertisers felt maintaining ad ties to the team after reports surfaced about Sterling’s remarks would not be in their best interest. “The comments allegedly made by Clippers owner, Donald Sterling, are offensive and reprehensible, and they are inconsistent with our views and values,” Kia said in a statement Monday. The NBA is expected to make an announcement regarding Sterling’s alleged comments today. THR Sterling’s tirade was prompted when his girlfriend, V. Stiviano, posted a photo of herself with Magic Johnson on Instagram. In the audio remarks obtained by TMZ and Deadspin, Sterling expresses displeasure about having black people attend Clipper games.

On Her 88th Birthday, Harper Lee Heralds Mockingbird eBook (FishbowlNY)
Per an announcement Monday by HarperCollins, on what is author Harper Lee’s 88th birthday, To Kill a Mockingbird will be available for the first time as an eBook July 8. GalleyCat “I’m still old-fashioned. I love dusty old books and libraries. I am amazed and humbled that Mockingbird has survived this long. This is Mockingbird for a new generation,” Lee explained in the statement. Mashable The decision to embrace digital appears to represent a shift in thinking for Lee, who wrote a piece for O Magazine in 2006 about how she learned to read. “Can you imagine curling up in bed to read a computer? Weeping for Anna Karenina and being terrified by Hannibal Lecter, entering the heart of darkness with Mistah Kurtz, having Holden Caulfield ring you up,” she wrote at the time. “Some things should happen on soft pages, not cold metal.” Lee had sued a literary agent last year for allegedly tricking her into signing over the copyright of her celebrated and only book. The lawsuit was settled a few months later. NYT / ArtsBeat With more than 30 million copies sold worldwide since it was first published in 1960, according to HarperCollins, To Kill a Mockingbird, along with another holdout, J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher In the Rye, represented a large literary gap in the digital reading library. It continues to sell 1 million copies a year and is a staple in classrooms and reading programs across the country. The eBook’s release will mark the 54th anniversary of the novel’s original publication. A digital audio version, narrated by Sissy Spacek, will be made available the same day.

Qatar’s Al Jazeera Files $150 Million Damages Claim with Egypt (Reuters)
The Qatar-based satellite network Al Jazeera served Egypt with a $150 million compensation claim on Monday for what it said was damage to its media business inflicted by Cairo’s military-backed rulers, a step likely to worsen Qatari-Egyptian relations. Politico / Dylan Byers on Media Three Al Jazeera journalists — Peter Greste, an Australian; Mohamed Fahmy, a Canadian-Egyptian national; and Baher Mohamed, an Egyptian — were detained in Cairo on Dec. 29 and are on trial facing charges of terrorism and spreading false news, which they deny. A fourth Al Jazeera reporter, Abdullah al-Shami, has been detained since August but not charged. Financial Times The broadcaster and its journalists have been the target of an intense campaign by Egyptian authorities, who accuse the channel of being biased in favor of the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood of ousted president Mohamed Morsi. The lawyers argue that by arresting and attacking Al Jazeera journalists, seizing the broadcaster’s property and jamming its signal, the Egyptian government has violated its rights as a foreign investor in the country and put the $90 million it has invested in Egypt since 2001 at risk. Washington Post Al Jazeera said in a statement posted on its website that it lodged a formal “notification of dispute” with Egypt’s interim government based on a bilateral investment treaty between Qatar and Egypt dating back to 1999. That pact calls on both governments to provide “fair and equitable treatment” to investors, according to the network. It did not say where it was lodged. It threatened to seek international arbitration if the two sides do not reach a settlement within six months.

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Daily Show Taps SNL’s Michael Che as Newest Correspondent (Variety)
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is adding to its news team, tapping stand-up comedian and Saturday Night Live writer Michael Che as its newest correspondent. TVNewser Che will officially join the show after SNL wraps up its season in June. Deadline Hollywood Che joined SNL full-time in September after a guest-writing stint last season. This is a rare talent move from SNL to another late-night show as up-and-comers who get their break at the venerable NBC series tend to stay there for a long time. Che made his late-night debut in 2012 on CBS’ Late Show With David Letterman and became the first stand-up comedian to perform on NBC’s Late Night With Seth Meyers after the SNL alum took the helm of the show. At Comedy Central, Che has appeared on @midnight and John Oliver’s New York Stand-Up Show and recently taped his first stand-up special, which is scheduled to air June 6.

Doonesbury Website Moves to the Washington Post (Washington Post), the ultimate destination for fans of Garry Trudeau’s famous comic strip, will now live exclusively on the Washington Post’s website. More than just your average fan site, is a place where readers can interact with the strip and its characters through fresh content and features like daily videos, links to news stories, a regular Straw Poll, character bios, a Doonesbury timeline and more. FishbowlDC Now located at, the site will feature lots of other features, including BLOWBACK, a moderated forum of interesting comments on the strip from readers around the world, FAQ, answers to reader queries about the strip and its long and complex history and plotlines, and SAYWHAT?, which highlights a notable odd, inexplicable or embarrassing comment by a public figure, five days a week. Poynter / MediaWire The Doonesbury site was previously at Slate, an agreement that Slate spokesperson Jocelyn Nubel said was mutual. According to Post spokesperson Kris Coratti, “Doonesbury needed a new home, and the team felt that the Washington Post was a great place because of our built-in comics audience.” There was not a bidding war for the site, she added.

Netflix Signs Comcast-Like Web Traffic Deal With Verizon (Re/Code)
Netflix confirmed that it has signed an “interconnect” deal with Verizon, which is designed to make it easier for the streaming service to get its videos to Verizon’s broadband customers. Mashable Netflix said that the deal is a paid peering arrangement and that customers should see improvements over the course of several months. A Verizon spokesperson also confirmed the deal but declined to discuss the terms. GigaOM Netflix entered into the deal with Comcast in February after Netflix subscribers saw average streaming speeds over Comcast’s network decline for months. As part of the terms, Netflix is paying Comcast money to facilitate direct interconnection between the video service and Comcast’s network.

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John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight Attracts 1.4 Million (Deadline Hollywood)
John Oliver’s debut as host of Last Week Tonight opened strong on HBO with 1.1 million viewers tuned in Sunday night at 11 p.m. A second play lifted the show’s total for the night to 1.4 million. The 1.1 million is an improvement of 51 percent over the time slot’s average. NYT The audience for Oliver’s show roughly matched the average for HBO’s Friday night series, Real Time With Bill Maher. For the season, that show has averaged 1.2 million viewers per episode. Meanwhile, the power hitter for HBO on the night, Game of Thrones, continued to break records, hitting a new high at 9 p.m. of 6.9 million viewers. That total is particularly striking because HBO is available in less than a third of television households.

Outnumbered Debuts on Fox News (TVNewser)
Fox News’ new noon panel show Outnumbered premiered Monday afternoon with Tucker Carlson serving as the inaugural “one lucky guy” sitting on a couch next to four of Fox News’ women. The ensemble cast featured Harris Faulkner, Sandra Smith, Jedediah Bila, Kimberly Guilfoyle and Carlson. Variety The 21st Century Fox-owned network is trying to find “new and interesting ways to present the news,” Bill Shine, executive vice president of programming at Fox News, who includes the opinionated panel show The Five and Megyn Kelly’s new primetime show on the network as other examples of that mission. Shine said the initial idea for Outnumbered came from Roger Ailes, the network’s chairman and chief executive.

Freed VICE Reporter Says He’ll Return to Ukraine (
Simon Ostrovsky, an American journalist who was taken prisoner for three days last week in eastern Ukraine, said Monday he is eager to return to the region despite the escalating danger. “I think the reason they took me was because they wanted to stop me reporting, so I’d really like to go back to Ukraine and continue sending stories from there, because that’s what it’s all about,” he told Today’s Savannah Guthrie in his first interview since his April 24 release. TVNewser In the interview, Ostrovsky recounted being captured and beaten by Russian insurgents for three days and nights. “The first night was really terrible,” Ostrovsky told Guthrie Monday morning. “I don’t think they want to kill me, I think they just want to put a scare in me,” he said about his thinking during the beatings.

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WHCA Enlists History Channel to Produce Doc on the Organization (Deadline Hollywood)
Pulling back the curtain, History Channel announced Monday morning it will work with the White House Correspondents’ Association to produce a special video commemorating the centennial celebration of the organization as well as its annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner. The video will be screened at that annual Beltway bash, which will again be held at Washington’s Hinckley Hilton on May 3. President Obama and former President Clinton will participate in the video chronicling the origin of the WHCA in 1914 and its evolution over the century. FishbowlDC In related news, the WHCA and The George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs hosted a panel on Monday to discuss the past, present and future of minority journalists in the White House press corps.

Turkish Journalist Sentenced to Prison for an ‘Insulting’ Tweet (Mashable)
A Turkish journalist is going to prison for insulting Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Twitter. The criminal court in Ankara sentenced Önder Aytaç, a well-known writer and columnist for the opposition newspaper Taraf, to a 10-month prison sentence on Monday for “insulting public officials” — in this case, Erdoğan. Aytaç, whose Twitter handle is @onderaytac, is a former police official and part of the Gülen movement, a religious group that once had close ties to Erdoğan but now opposes the prime minister. The tweet that put Aytaç in Turkish government’s cross hairs was reportedly posted in 2012.

Katie Couric to Debut Two New Series for Yahoo News (TVNewser)
With her syndicated daytime talk show set to wrap in June, Katie Couric will have an even larger presence as Yahoo News global anchor. Couric announced last night at the Yahoo Newfront in New York City two new original interview and video series she’ll host starting this summer: World 3.0 and Now I Get It.

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Anna Jones Named CEO of Hearst Magazines UK (FishbowlNY)
Hearst has named Anna Jones the new CEO of Hearst Magazines UK. Jones most recently served as Hearst Magazine UK’s chief operating officer, a role she held since 2011. Prior to joining Hearst, Jones served as digital and strategy director at Hachette Filipacchi UK. Jones’ appointment is effective immediately.

Warner Bros. Wins Lawsuit Claiming It Stole The Matrix (THR / Hollywood, Esq.)
It’s official: The Matrix trilogy had nothing to do with Nazis. On Monday, Warner Bros., Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski and Joel Silver won summary judgment in defense of a lawsuit that contended that the Keanu Reeves starrer was stolen. The lawsuit came from Thomas Althouse in California federal court in 2013. The plaintiff said that it was not until 2010 that he had watched The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions and began investigating the possibility that those films released way back in 2003 had possible similarities to his own script, The Immortals. Althouse said he had submitted his script to Warner Bros. in 1993.

NY Times Revamps Video Hub (FishbowlNY)
The New York Times has given its video hub — — a makeover. The site now features responsive design, a sleeker appearance and easier navigation tools. The Times videos are accessed via a drop-down menu, and are organized into the following 14 channels: News and Politics, International, Opinion, Times Documentaries, Business, Technology, Culture, Style, Health, Food, Travel, Sports, Real Estate and Science. The new hub also introduces “branded video playlists,” — aka native advertising. The first is a campaign for Sotheby’s International Realty.

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Publish date: April 29, 2014 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT