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Netflixmovie It’s fitting our inaugural Friday linkfest would start the day before Halloween. The media world can be a scary place to navigate, what with consolidation, funding issues and the conflation of hard news with deepfakes and commentary. Not to mention, some odd occurrences such as Alaina Pinto’s departure from WHDH. But there are some treats, like Morning Brew, the business-focused e-newsletter that’s raking in big bucks because of its millennial audience.

The format is a simple one: filter the onslaught of news about the news, and provide our readers with the content we think is worth a second look.

  1. The Wall Street Journal reports Senate Democrats are considering forcing tech giants such as Google and Facebook to pay local news organizations for content.
    1. More reading from Leadership Connect: Funding (Saving) Local Journalism
  2. The threat to Voice of America’s independence has grown. NPR reports a regulatory “firewall” intended to protect Voice of America and its affiliated newsrooms from political interference in their journalism was swept aside late Monday night by the chief executive of the federal agency which oversees the government’s international broadcasters.
  3. Does turning off comments on articles drive users away? NiemanLab cites a study that says “no.” What are the parameters of this study? How are they measuring “toxicity”?
  4. Variety’s Brian Steinberg does a lengthy analysis of a post-Jeff Zucker CNN.
  5. Axios scooped that the Lincoln Project wants to expand its media business after the election, having recently signed with the United Talent Agency. Axios also got wind of Insider Inc. buying a majority stake in Morning Brew! The millennial-targeting business site has some incredible viewership and financials given the trajectory of other small media outlets. On Deck’s Julian Weisser makes an interesting point about legacy vs. trajectory in comparing Morning Brew’s valuation with that of the Boston Globe’s $7o million.
  6. Exclusive from The Hollywood Reporter: Jon Stewart is returning with a current affairs series for Apple TV+, accompanied by podcasts.
  7. The Facebook, Google, and Twitter CEOs testified before Congress about their responsibilities when it comes to sharing and policing information on the internet. But a real change to §230  seems far off. For extra credit, see Title V of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.
  8. While time spent on social media has increased during the pandemic, the number of new users hasn’t.
  9. The WSJ Magazine is cutting its print editions from 12 to eight.
  10. Finance site MarketWatch is adding a paywall to its digital content.
  11. A survey of business focused journalists, shows that New York City and London will remain prominent media hubs after the COVID-19 pandemic.
  12. Intercept Co-Founder Glenn Greenwald tweets he is resigning. He lays out his reasons in a lengthy substack.

If there are stories you think should be highlighted, please do drop a line to

Have a Happy Halloween, readers. And remember to #vote.


Megan Kashtan and Wayne McKenzie contributed to this report.

Baz Hiralal

Managing Editor, Thought Leadership