US Digest: NYT buyout rumour; Student paper fights prior review; Spiderman gets the sack

NYT shares on the up after rumour of buyout

Shares in the New York Times Co. rose by more than 11 per cent yesterday, the result of a rumour that mexican billionaire Carlos Slim was planning to buy the company.

Slim’s representative has denied rumours that he is after a greater stake in the company, claiming that the billionaire is happy with his 6.9 per cent lot.

Full story at Editor&Publisher

Disney and Cablevision slug it out over ABC

Cablevision subscribers in New York have been warned by The Walt Disney Company that the local ABC signal may go blank this weekend. The cable providers are locked in a dispute with Disney, who want an extra $40 million in annual fees. Cablevision already pay Disney $200 million a year.

According to the NYT, Disney have previously charged for cable channels such as ESPN and the Disney Channel, but not for its ABC broadcast signal.

The Academy Awards will be broadcast by ABC on Sunday, and a continuing dispute would mean 3.1 million customers in New York unable to tune in.

Jay Rosen on the future of journalism education

A little follow up now to last week’s US Digest post on the new NYT/NYU East Village hyperlocal blog. Over at Nieman Journalism Lab Seth C. Lewis has posted a Q&A with NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen, who hailed the class working on the new blog with him the most exciting he has worked with in 24 years.

Rosen discusses the thinking behind the collaboration, how it will cope with students coming and going, and how the model might benefit journalism education across the United States.

This project began when I noticed what the Times was doing with The Local, and thought I glimpsed a need to experiment and learn. I mean, that was the logic of what they were doing. So, the first step is to get inside the head of the potential collaborator and start with a need or interest they have. The next step was to look at what we are doing at NYU and where we wanted to go with our program, and figure out where the two circles overlapped.

Students stand ground over prior review

Fading to Black reported yesterday on an ongoing dispute at Mounds View High School, Minnesota. Student journalists working on school newspaper the Viewer have said they will stop publishing before ceding to the school’s demand for prior review of stories.

“I would like to keep our newspaper a real newspaper, not a newsletter for the district,” said Christina Xia, 18, editor-in-chief of the paper.

The school district’s case is based on a controversial story published by the paper, naming students involved in the misuse of a teacher’s photograph online. The paper apparently obtained signed waivers from the students involved and their parents, but school administrators are concerned about the legality of publishing the names.

Full story at this link.

Do you have any other skills I can put down Mr. Parker?

Finally, bad news I’m afraid. Everyone knows by now that a lot of news industry jobs are hanging by a thread. I would have thought that, in Peter Parker’s case, that thread was stronger than most. Superior in tensile strength to high-grade steel even

But, according to CNN, the Daily Bugle photographer and alter-ego of Spiderman is to lose his job in the latest issue of the Amazing Spiderman, and face the grim reality of unemployment.

“He’s going to struggle with unemployment and trying to save the city while he can barely afford to keep a roof over his head,” said Steve Wacker, Marvel Comics senior editor.

What next? Clark Kent down the dole office? Talk about healthy competition.

I might have something ideally suited to you Mr. Parker...

Image of Carlos Slim courtesy of Jose Cruz/ABr on Wikimedia

Image of Jay Rosen Courtesy of Joi on Flickr

Image of Spiderman courtesy of HOWI on Wikimedia

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