The best place for Megyn Kelly is still Fox News; it’s The Boston Globe vs. Northeastern University; Deadspin and The Onion have new homes

April 9, 2019
Category: Newsletters

Your Tuesday news roundup

Good Tuesday morning. Lots going on in the media world to start this week, including Megyn Kelly’s next step, a controversy involving The Boston Globe, a big honor for NBC’s “Dateline,” an incredibly self-aware piece on race by an NBA player and much more. So let’s get right to it, starting with Kelly.

Kelly’s next move

What’s next for Megyn Kelly? She hasn’t been on TV since leaving NBC amid controversy in October. She said she expects to return to television in 2019, but her options might be limited.

The Daily Beast’s Lloyd Grove reports that it’s unlikely “Trump-friendly outlets such as Newsmax, Sinclair and One America News Network” would be able to offer her the money she has made in the past and probably is looking for now. (She reportedly made $69 million for 17 months of work at NBC.) It’s also unlikely that other major networks such as ABC, CBS and CNN would bring her aboard after the controversial comments she made on air about blackface.

That leaves one possible destination: a homecoming to Fox News, where she was an anchor from 2004 to 2017. One industry insider told Grove, “This woman needs a show on Fox News and she will do great. I would take Megyn Kelly on in a heartbeat. She’s polarizing, but so was Bill O’Reilly. And guess where polarizing personas succeed? Cables news, and Fox News in particular.”

Makes sense, but Fox News’ current primetime lineup seems set with Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham.


Workers walk through the pressroom of The Boston Globe building in 2009. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) 

A Boston Globe controversy

In an opinion piece over the weekend for The Boston Globe, author Max Kutner used the college admissions scandal involving celebrities Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman as a jumping off point to discuss how universities compete with one another for prestige. Kutner wrote that Northeastern University in Boston, among other schools, “game” the system to finish higher in the influential U.S. News & World Report college rankings, the belief being that the higher the ranking, the better the applicants.

On Monday, Northeastern fired back. The university’s vice president for communications Renata Nyul blasted the Globe’s piece in an article for the school’s website. Nyul started her article by writing:

“It is an extreme and rare occasion when a news outlet publishes an article with such disregard for facts and important context that it effectively sabotages basic journalistic practices.”

Nyul said the Globe story was “riddled with breaches of journalistic norms” and it was a “shocking departure from Globe standards.” Then, in a neatly designed section of the online piece, Nyul addresses each Globe “assertion” and gives a response, which she calls “reality.” One of Northeastern’s biggest complaints, though far from the only one, was that Kutner used quotes from a story he had written for Boston Magazine in 2014.

But the Globe stands by the story. In a statement to Poynter late Monday night, the Globe said:

“It is not beyond journalistic norm to cite the work of other publications. It is common journalistic practice to build on stories written in the past, as well as use quotes from respected and fact-checked publications, to tell a fuller story and contextualize current issues.

In (Kutner’s story), published in the Globe’s Ideas section, direct quotes from former Northeastern president Richard Freeland were used to support the assertion that the U.S. News & World Report rankings can be gamed, and in fact have been gamed, by American institutions, including Northeastern. (The story) asserts that gaming the system is in no way illegal or in violation of any standards of practice or protocols.

The Globe’s story goes on to highlight Northeastern’s current standing as an academic leader.”

 


A journalist holds a microphone bearing the Univision logo in Los Angeles in this file photo. Univision is selling Gizmodo, The Onion and other English-language sites to the private equity firm Great Hill Partners. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)

Gizmodo Media Group sold

Univision is selling the Gizmodo Media Group to private equity firm Great Hill Partners, according to The Wall Street Journal’s Ben Mullin. (Note: Story is behind a paywall.) Gizmodo includes, most notably, Deadspin and The Onion, as well as Jezebel, The Root and Kotaku. They used to be a part of Gawker Media, but when Gawker went bankrupt in 2016, Univision bought them for $135 million.

Mullin writes, “(New CEO James) Spanfeller hopes to bolster the company’s profit margins from automated or ‘programmatic’ advertising sales, targeting marketers who are seeking brand-safe content and high-quality audiences that are difficult to find elsewhere, the person said.”

In a memo to his new staff, Spanfeller wrote, “While editorial independence is critically important, there needs to be a healthy and productive partnership with the business side for the company to be truly successful.”

 


Jane Pauley and Stone Phillips, co-hosts of “Dateline NBC,” pose on the show’s set at NBC’s headquarters in New York April 16, 2002. (AP Photo/Stuart Ramson)

Hall of Fame to honor Dateline

NBC’s “Dateline” leads this year’s inductees into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame. Other shows that have previously been inducted into the B&C Hall of Fame include “20/20,” “American Idol,” “Entertainment Tonight,” “Family Feud,” “Good Morning America,” “Today,” “60 Minutes,” “Mad Men” and “Monday Night Football.”

“Dateline” premiered in 1992 and has aired more than 2,700 episodes. The show will be inducted with individuals, including journalist Meredith Vieira and Showtime CEO David Nevins, in October.


Utah Jazz guard Kyle Korver in 2018 in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Most thoughtful story

If you only have time to read one story today, read Kyle Korver’s essay for The Players’ Tribune called “Privileged.” It’s a brutally honest look at race from Korver, a white player in the mostly black National Basketball Association.

Korver writes:

“There’s an elephant in the room that I’ve been thinking about a lot over these last few weeks. It’s the fact that, demographically, if we’re being honest: I have more in common with the fans in the crowd at your average NBA game than I have with the players on the court.”

He also writes:

“What I’m realizing is, no matter how passionately I commit to being an ally, and no matter how unwavering my support is for NBA and WNBA players of color….. I’m still in this conversation from the privileged perspective of opting in to it. Which of course means that on the flip side, I could just as easily opt out of it. Every day, I’m given that choice — I’m granted that privilege — based on the color of my skin.”

The Players’ Tribune was started by former baseball great Derek Jeter and gives a voice to athletes of all sports. Often, the website features a PR spin and is very pro-player, which should be expected given the name of the site. But when athletes delve into personal issues such as Korver did here, The Players’ Tribune is at its best.

A logo for the “Breaking the Silence” media collaboration in Oregon that rolled out this week. (Courtesy)

Covering a tough subject

There aren’t many more difficult stories for the media to cover than suicide. The goal is to be sensitive and helpful without prompting copycats. To better tackle this issue, more than 30 Oregon news outlets have joined forces.

The University of Oregon’s Brent Walth and Nicole Dahmen write about this collaboration for Poynter. They relay how the news outlets produce stories — from op-eds to pieces about resources and prevention to deeply-reported investigative and solutions stories — that share the common goal of putting “a spotlight on a problem that claimed the lives of more than 800 Oregonians last year.”

 


Reba McEntire arrives at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Best line

Sorry, this is leftover from the weekend (and a little off the media path), but I must give a shout-out to country legend Reba McEntire for calling out sexism at Sunday night’s American Country Music awards.

“Do you know it snowed in Las Vegas just a few weeks ago?” McEntire said. “It was so cold, it froze us women out of entertainer of the year.”

No woman was nominated for ACM’s entertainer of the year for the second consecutive year. (Seriously, how was Kacey Musgraves not nominated?) Since 1971, only eight of the 48 entertainer of the year awards have gone to women. The last was Taylor Swift in 2011.

Univision journalist dies of cancer

Luis Gómez, an Emmy award-winning anchor and reporter for Univision, died after a year-and-a-half battle with cancer. He was 40. His last day on the air was March 25; he died Saturday.

In his final message to viewers that aired just a few days ago, Gómez said, “My commitment to the audience was always honest and transparent. Sometimes I tried to make them laugh, even when I couldn’t bear the pain.”

Check it out

The Washington Post’s Shelly Tan deserves some sort of award for her astonishing illustrated guide of all 2,339 deaths on HBO’s  “Game of Thrones.”

Writing for the New Yorker, Paul Elie looks at the Catholic Church’s history of abuse, its legacy of evasion, and a recent effort to compensate survivors of sexual abuse by priests.

Also in the New Yorker, a terrific piece by Nick Paumgarten about one-time popular morning drive sports shock-jock Craig Carton, who was recently sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison for a tickets scam.

The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Lisa Gartner wrote about years of abuse at a prestigious boys school in Pennsylvania. On Monday, the state shut down the school.

Correction: In yesterday’s newsletter, we misnamed a Chicago radio station’s affiliation. WBEZ is an NPR station. We regret the error.

Have feedback or a tip? Email Poynter senior media writer Tom Jones at tjones@poynter.org.

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