Surprise! Even Bloomberg covers Bloomberg at the convention
Good morning. Here's our daily summary of all the media news you need to know. Want to get this briefing in your inbox every morning? Subscribe here.
BREAKING NEWS: Michael Bloomberg does exist, Bloomberg News itself confirmed late Wednesday, zealously discarding the shackles of self-censorship in reporting on its boss.
Yes, some things in life are apparently unavoidable, including rising college tuitions, Russian internet hacking, overacting by Al Pacino and, now, Michael Bloomberg. The high-quality financial news goliath he created isn't big on mentioning him.
When he decided to back Hillary Clinton, he even gave the exclusive to The New York Times, prompting Bloomberg News to offer a brief dispatch that attributed the matter to The New York Times. But the legacy of American freedom so deeply associated with Philadelphia has clearly moved editors to admirable, red-white-and-blue full disclosure in acknowledging that he indeed spoke last night to the Democratic National Convention.
"Bloomberg Tell Independents to Pick Clinton Over 'Risky' Trump" is the headline on its very own story that appends this at the bottom: "NOTE: Bloomberg is founder and majority owner of Bloomberg, LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News." There was also video of his strong address and an op-ed, based on his speech, under his very own byline.
No, for sure there wasn't the flavor of, say, Ron Fournier's take in The Atlantic: "Michael Bloomberg, a brand-name billionaire far wealthier than Donald Trump, a famously independent voter who derides both the Democratic and Republican parties, endorsed Hillary Clinton on Wednesday and called Trump a 'risky, radical and reckless choice' for president. 'Let’s elect a sane, competent person,' he said." (The Atlantic)
But it's still good to know somebody could still speak to 20 million or so Americans and have it mentioned with characteristic clinical neutrality by Bloomberg News. Clearly, it was willing to deploy some of the 100 people it's brought to each convention to delve into heretofore off-limits territory. And its account was given better play (albeit discreetly so) on its site than that even given to today's "Trigger-Happy Stock Traders Show Why Regulation Is Hard in China."
We can hope this constitutes its version of an Orange Revolution or Prague Spring in the newsroom, at least when it comes to reporting on one of the world's wealthiest individuals. For sure, it will probably continue to glaringly omit him from its comprehensive daily update of the world's wealthiest individuals. But who knows? Perhaps another unavoidable reality — the fear of Donald Trump — will continue to have a cleansing effect.
Roger Ailes goes radio silent
Amid the ongoing Fox investigation that prompted his resignation, "A Fox News correspondent who used to speak with Ailes regularly said Ailes has been told not to communicate with any staffers, and two executives confirmed this." Brian Stelter writes: "As part of the exit deal, Ailes and 21st Century Fox agreed not to disparage each other. That means, among other things, that the company cannot officially share the results of the Paul, Weiss investigation. But there was never any intention of releasing the report anyway, a corporate source said." (CNN Money)
Nick Denton's reprieve
"A Florida appeals court temporarily lifted the threat of personal bankruptcy hanging over Gawker Media LLC founder Nick Denton as a result of a heated legal battle with former wrestler Hulk Hogan. The judge’s ruling Wednesday prevents Terry Bollea, the wrestler’s real name, from enforcing a $140 million invasion-of-privacy judgment handed down in Florida earlier this year over sex tape the blog published in 2012." (The Wall Street Journal)
Pissing on the Dems
What was the big news for "Fox & Friends" this morning? Was it the Democrats hauling out President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden or Bloomberg? Nope.
Try "Overturning tradition: Donald Trump campaigns during the DNC." Co-host Brian Kilmeade asked the big question (for him) in light of three Trump appearances yesterday: "How much guts does it take to go to an unscripted situation for an hour, something Hillary Clinton hasn't done for almost 280 days?" Co-host Ainsley Earhardt melded the ebullient and reverent as she declared, "He has three unscripted press conferences, it's unbelievable!" Chief ringmaster Steve Doocy, his smug beaming in overdrive, warned, "It's only expected to get more vicious when Hillary Clinton steps to the podium" tonight. Earnhardt then introduced a report on the scene with a compendium of last night's "mud slinging moments" from the Democrats.
Facebook is so successful that...
"Facebook makes mountains of money through advertising — $6.2 billion last quarter alone, to be specific. But as the company took analyst questions in the wake of yet another glowing earnings report, CFO Dave Wehner said something interesting: Facebook’s ad load, or the total number of ads the company can show to each user, will be a relative non-factor for predicting Facebook’s future revenue growth starting this time next year. Translation: Facebook is about to max out on the number of ads it can show users inside its flagship product, which means it will need to find other ways to grow the company’s ad business moving forward. Simply increasing the number of ads it shows people will not be an option." (Recode)
A pundit's confessions
In "I was a Fox pundit — a liberal talking head reveals the truth about Fox News," John Devore is more complimentary than one might assume. "In a way, Fox News is outsider performance art. I'd call it propaganda if it weren't so sloppy and eager to please. In other ways, it's an Alamo of truth for Americans who don't like the way the country is changing. These people are your neighbors. Their voices deserve to be heard, and you do not have to like it. I prefer my racists and homophobes to be loud and proud so I can hear them coming." (Esquire)
Much ado about nothing
Fusion, Vox and some on social media were rather wrongheadedly aghast at editorial decision making by some newspapers after Hillary Clinton was formally nominated Tuesday at the Democratic Convention. (Poynter)
Look, look, they said, papers like The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and The New York Times weren't using a photo of her but of Bill (or, like The Times, of joyous Clinton delegates). The implication of sexism was clear. The reality is that there were lots of ways to go with a photo, especially since she didn't herself speak by satellite until very late (The Journal actually ran a photo of Bill Clinton speaking for its early edition, then swapped it for one of Hillary on the big screen). And, too, there were photos of Bill during his notable, if not necessarily memorable address. As Post Editor Marty Baron also notes, "numerous senior-level women were directly involved in conceiving the front page and selecting the photos. Moreover, it was reviewed by other top-level women in our news meeting. No one expressed a concern."
Oh, reader James Devitt sends along a copy of the New York Daily News cover the morning after Obama was first nominated eight years ago. Yes, there's a single image...of Bill Clinton. "MY MAN BAM — Clinton wows crowd on night of historic vote nominating Obama."
It's not "Carpool Karaoke" but...
Was Joe Biden actually likely to cry last night in addressing the Democratic Convention? The conjecture was part of yesterday's Politico "Nerdcast," a political junkie's version (well, sort of) of Jerry Seinfeld's "Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee." (Politico)
In this case both National Editor Kristin Roberts and Political Editor Charlie Mahtesian sit in the back of a GM Suburban and discuss matters as the car goes, ah, somewhere in the streets near the Democratic Convention. OK, OK, it's not like James Corden's hilarious "Carpool Karaoke" with an unbelievably cool Michelle Obama, which has had 34 million (YouTube) After all, these are politics nerds.
When you're hot
Facebook's latest, head-turning quarterly earnings results come "as growth at other major tech companies stalls...Marketing-technology company Kenshoo said its clients spent 47% more on Facebook and Instagram ads in the second quarter versus a year ago...According to research firm GlobalWebIndex, nearly two in three adults with internet access outside of China use the Facebook app every month—double what the firm saw in early 2013." (The Wall Street Journal)
Just as a point of comparison
Gannett, the big newspaper company, reported net income for the quarter was $12.3 million on revenues of $748.8 million. Facebook's quarterly profit was $2 billion and revenues were $6.44 billion. (Poynter)
A winning Trump map
"Donald Trump’s path: What map should democrats fear the most?" asked The New York Times' Nate Cohn and Toni Monkovic in a piece of data-driven analysis worth a look. In sum, it's all incredibly close, Pennsylvania could be the Big Enchilada for Trump and this take offers the vision of a 269-269 Electoral College tie then broken by a Republican-run House of Representatives. (The New York Times)
Chelsea's fashion choices
The press frequently ridiculed the attire of the young Chelsea Clinton. Now, as she's part of history in Philadelphia, here comes a rather belated defense in Slate, blaming it all on the media: "If Chelsea had come of age in the White House of the aughts or 2010s instead of the nineties, she would have found shelter in the warm embrace of feminist internet. That’s not to say that bloviating conservatives like Rush Limbaugh wouldn’t have disgustingly called her the ‘White House dog’, but it would mean that there would be plenty of women and girls lining up to praise her Man Repeller-worthy fashion choices and her unwavering confidence. Imagine the "Fuck Yeah Chelsea Clinton" Tumblrs and Instagrams featuring photographs of her being comfortable in her own skin, showing the world just how badass the first daughter truly was. (Slate) Well, I can't quite imagine those Tumblrs, but whatever.
Tweet of the day
From Jeremy Diamond:
"Trump's breakdown of media:
25% are fine;
50% are not great;
And 25% are among the worst people you will ever encounter in your life." (@JDiamond1)
OK, like George W. Bush looking into Vladimir Putin's soul, I'll at least look into the master bathroom mirror this morning and try to figure out what category I'm in. Fingers crossed.
Correction: A previous version of this newsletter suggested Bloomberg News provided scant coverage of Michael Bloomberg during his tenure as New York City mayor. It offered regular coverage of his terms in City Hall.