Thematic news coverage advances with COVID-19 vaccine rollout and immigration reform. For those gathering political intelligence, train your eyes away from Myanmar aerobics to our Movers & Shakers and a few new sources, including a podcast on Preet and Vinit Bharara’s CAFE, which promises to explore how the law intersects with politics, business, technology, and beyond. Leadership Connect clients are able to see the full listing, including producers.
There are several podcast hosts, including Third Degree with CNN Legal Analyst Elie Honig:
We launch Monday morning, with daily episodes on impeachment from day one until the end.
This’ll be a crazy, historic stretch — and I’ll give you everything you need to know in under 10 minutes, every day. And we’ve got big plans from there on.
Thank you for checking it out!
— Elie Honig (@eliehonig) February 5, 2021
Other new media ventures include:
- Just the News, created by John Solomon, who spent the last 25 years at The Hill, The Washington Times, The Associated Press, The Washington Post, Newsweek and The Daily Beast.
- Venture Capital firm Andreessen Horowitz (A16Z) is launching an opinion publication. CJR’s Mathew Ingram has a great analysis on the plans.
- The Miami Herald’s Rick Hirsch tells Poynter, “There was a body on every town and there was somebody who went through every agenda. That doesn’t exist anymore.” Enter CivicPro, built by policy wonks.
Movers & Shakers has some major CEO news. Of course we have to mention the transition at Amazon with Jeff Bezos and Andy Jassy — check out Bloomberg’s piece by Jason Schreier and Priya Anand on Jassy’s plans for the Amazon gaming division. On the news media front:
- Politico is looking for a new CEO as Patrick Steel is on his way out this summer.
- Former San Antonio Express-News Immigration Reporter Silvia Foster-Frau joined The Washington Post as a multiculturalism and demographics reporter.
- Variety reports Jeff Zucker, the TV executive who helped breathe new life and relevance into the CNN cable-news network, expects to leave the outlet when his contract lapses at the end of 2021.
- ABC News President James Goldston made the “tough decision” to step down on March 31.
- Jamie Fly is returning to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty as president and CEO.
- NBC News Digital Assistant Managing Editor for Politics, Gregg Birnbaum, is leaving, while Liz Johnstone is moving up.
- Political Writer Kevin Drum left Mother Jones and is writing here.
We can can infer from this briefing and the last, there’s a solid trend of change for decisionmakers in the c-suite and in editorial. The question to answer is how will demographics and reporting change at these orgs. It will be one of the subjects tracked in this Media Intelligence Twitter List.
Alongside immigration beat moves, we’re looking for good intel on vaccine rollout:
- Tim Duy’s (he just joined SGH Macro Advisors) Fed Watch blog references a Bloomberg article on vaccine rollout.
- Bloomberg’s COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker is one of the best we’ve seen.
- Meanwhile, Michelle Fay Cortez and Emma Court wrote on Feb. 1: More Americans have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine than have tested positive for the virus, an early but hopeful milestone in the race to end the pandemic.
- At The New York Times, they are tracking coronavirus mutations and vaccine effectiveness.
- Fortune’s Grady McGregor added vaccines to his beat, as did David Morris.
D.C. overage we’re watching includes:
- The r/wallstreetbets saga. Politico Financial Services Reporter Zachary Warmbrodt is on top of the Robinhood “meme stocks” fallout – a congressional hearing is scheduled for Feb. 18.
- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wants to teach Congress to add social media to their communications platforms.
Will this change coverage by reporters and disrupt the information flow if politicians take less time to curate their messages?
- Poynter’s newsletter looks at the relationship between the White House and the media.
- And Dan Rather has a timely piece in his new Substack: The Press In the Time of Biden
Whatever the future, coverage must go on today and tomorrow. We leave you with this Mover & Shaker Neil Bedi, in a nod why local journalism should be funded as the big get bigger. Bedi is now a federal government reporter at ProPublica. Bedi says,
I’m looking forward to holding federal agencies accountable for policies and decisions that affect people across the country.