American journalist released in Syria; British officials ID man believed to be Foley’s killer

mediawiremorningHappy Monday. Andrew Beaujon is taking a much-deserved vacation. Here are some media stories.

  1. American journalist freed in Syria: On Sunday, UN peacekeepers received Peter Theo Curtis, who was kidnapped in 2012, and turned him over to the U.S. “According to German newspaper die Welt am Sonntag, ‘something was given in return for his release’.” Curtis was “reportedly held by the al-Nusra Front or by splinter groups allied with the al-Qaeda-affiliated group.” (Al Jazeera) | Previously: The U.S. declined to pay ransom for James Foley, who was killed by Islamic State militants last week. (Poynter)
  2. UK intel ID’s person believed to be Foley’s killer: And “sources have said that rampant media speculation about the identity of the killer may be off base.” (NBC News) | Medill professor Ellen Shearer on Foley’s return to the front lines: “Passion prevailed. Jim wasn’t a desk guy.” (Washington Post)
  3. Carr makes peace with Vice: In 2011, when David Carr was “bumping bellies with [Vice CEO Shane] Smith over whose coverage was worthier, I failed to recognize that in a world that is hostile to journalism in all its forms, where dangerous conflicts seem to jump off every other day, you can’t be uppity about where your news comes from.” (New York Times) | Previously: Vice CEO: Woodward and Bernstein used to be punks, too. (Poynter) | Here’s the Carr-Smith showdown from “Page One.” (YouTube)

  4. “The reality is, magazines as a print business will ultimately die,” says Time Inc. CEO Joe Ripp in Gabriel Sherman’s profile of the recently spun-off company. “If we don’t transform this company, someone else will come in and do it.” (New York magazine)
  5. The homepageless Quartz gets a homepage: Visitors to qz.com will now see an “efficient briefing on global business news, called the Brief.” But it’s not “a sea of headlines,” Zach Seward writes in his introduction to the redesigned site. (Quartz) | Previously: The homepage is dead, and the social web has won—even at the New York Times. (Quartz) | Previously: 3 takeaways from the ‘death of the homepage’ and The New York Times innovation report. (Poynter)
  6. Has NYT subscriber growth stalled? Four years ago, a consulting firm estimated for The New York Times that it could reach 800,000 to 900,000 digital-only subscribers. “The problem is, the Times already hit the low end of that projection in June with 831,000 paying online readers,” Edmund Lee reports. (Re/code)
  7. Is it time to ditch native news apps? App use is growing more quickly than mobile Web use, but John McDermott argues news sites can best take advantage of that by having mobile-friendly sites that can be linked to in the apps people are actually using, like Facebook. (Digiday) | Previously: App use dominates mobile browser use, but what does that mean for news content? (Poynter)
  8. ‘We need more of a coffeehouse conversation’: That’s how NBC News president Deborah Turness explains her vision for “Meet the Press” to Bill Carter. Turness tried to make things work with host David Gregory, but “we weren’t able to build a new vision together in the end.” (New York Times) | Previously: Gregory’s replacement is Chuck Todd. (CNN)
  9. Paul Krugman saw Arcade Fire at Barclays Center: “I have to admit that the sound in a big arena is a bit murky — the bass was too loud — so it helped if you already knew and loved all the songs, which I did.” (New York Times)
  10. Job moves, edited by Benjamin Mullin: Ed Reams will be news director for WKOW in Madison, Wisconsin. Previously, he was assistant news director at WISN in Milwaukee. (Wheeler Report) | Clayton Clark will be a communication specialist for St. Agnes Hospital. Previously, he was a reporter for KMPH in Fresno. (Fresno Bee) | Bob Kravitz starts today as a columnist and sports reporter at WTHR in Indianapolis. Previously, he was a sports columnist at The Indianapolis Star. (Bob Kravitz) | Job of the day: Poynter’s News University is looking for an interactive learning fellow. Get your résumés in! (Poynter) | Send Ben your job moves: bmullin@poynter.org.

Suggestions? Criticisms? Would like this roundup each morning? This week, please email me: skirkland@poynter.org. You can reach your regular roundup guy at: abeaujon@poynter.org


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