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Vice Media and The Economist cut jobs as coronavirus pandemic wipes out ad revenue – Financial Post

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NEW YORK — The Economist Group and Vice Media Group said on Friday they were cutting more than 200 jobs combined as the coronavirus pandemic devastates the advertising market.

The Economist said it is eliminating 90 non-editorial jobs and Vice Media announced in an internal memo seen by Reuters that it will lay off 155 workers, reflecting an acceleration of the news media industry’s decline during the global pandemic.

Digital media companies, including Quartz and BuzzFeed, viewed as the vanguard of the news business just a few years ago, have cut jobs, furloughed employees and cut salaries in an effort to survive the outbreak.

On Thursday, Quartz announced that it is closing four of its offices, cutting executive salaries by 20% and eliminating 40% of its staff, affecting about 80 jobs. BuzzFeed furloughed 68 employees weeks after reducing salaries for the rest of 2020.

“We aren’t seeing the return from the platforms benefiting and making money from our hard work,” Vice Media Group CEO Nancy Dub said in the letter, which also blamed technology companies for the news media’s business problems. “Now, after many years of this, the squeeze is becoming a chokehold.”

Dub said in the letter that Big Tech posed a significant threat to journalism. Google and Facebook Inc have also seen drops in ad revenues since the coronavirus outbreak.

Readership across the news industry has reached record highs since the coronavirus outbreak, but advertising revenue has plunged as companies have pulled marketing budgets and some have blocked online ads from appearing on pandemic-related stories.

Vice said laid-off employees will receive severance pay and it will also pay healthcare benefits through 2020.

The Economist also said it will eliminate the print edition of its life and culture publication 1843 to save money and its chief executive and editor-in-chief are taking voluntary pay reductions.

Vice, a news and media organization targeted at millennials, is laying off 55 U.S.-based employees and 100 international staff. The company is also migrating some employees to its news division to prepare for a world news section on its international platforms. (Reporting by Arriana McLymore; Editing by Dan Grebler and Daniel Wallis)

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This Minnesota journalist says there's something important the media is missing about protests – CNN

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But in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death, Ibrahim and his small staff at the Sahan Journal have been on the front lines. The nonprofit news site is dedicated to covering immigrants and refugees in Minnesota. And Ibrahim says in recent days they’ve been pushing to cover important angles many national media stories have missed, like why a growing number of young Somalis are joining the protests in Minneapolis and what happened after the city’s only Spanish-language radio station burned down.
The 32-year-old editor and executive director spoke with CNN this week about what his team is seeing on the streets of Minneapolis. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Q: Minnesota is known for having a large Somali immigrant community. How have they been impacted by George Floyd’s death and by the protests, and how have you seen Somali immigrants responding?
A: The Somalis are also black and they’ve been disproportionately affected by the police activities. And if you go to the protests, they are more highly visible than before. The younger generation clearly came out this time. Probably they have more interactions with the police than their parents or they can relate more with the African American experience than their parents. I used to cover protests before. And this is completely different. I saw a lot of young Somalis participating, especially young females, wearing the hijab and all that.
We talked to a lot of people who say they are afraid of the police. When they see a police officer, they tense up. And those experiences show the lack of trust between the black community and the police. And it doesn’t matter whether you are a new immigrant or whether you were born here or whether your parents fled from civil war it’s almost the same experience as the African American community.
Q: And you mentioned that there can be kind of a generation gap between older Somalis and younger Somalis. Why is that?
A: The older generation, some of them fled civil war. They went through traumatizing events. They came here to have a better life and to raise a family, and all that, so they are probably more grateful to be here. And, you know, while their kids who were born here don’t have all that baggage, they see what’s going on. These kids, they went through the educational system. They have more history under their belt. They learned about inequalities and they experience them themselves on the streets. And that kind of creates a gap.
Q: I have seen some stories quoting Somalis talking about how they survived war, and they came to this country as refugees in search of safety, and now they’re finding themselves in the midst of this situation. Is that something you’ve been seeing? What is it like for them and what is it like for you, as someone who came to the US from Somalia years ago, to see violence erupting in this country?
A: I mean, the dynamics are different. But, you know, at the end of the day, it’s violence. And you know, buildings burned down and looting and all of that, some people get flashbacks because this reminds them of what they have fled.
But we know what’s causing this. And that makes a difference. In Somalia, people were fighting against each other. It was a civil war. Here it’s completely different. It’s a system against people. And you cannot compare those two. Here there are protests. If something is burned down, you can always rebuild a building that’s been damaged. But, the killing of George Floyd really shows how the system affects people.
Q: There’s also a geographic connection, right, between the Somali community and the part of Minneapolis where Mr. Floyd was killed?
A: Yeah, that area is actually one of the most diverse places in Minneapolis. There are a lot of immigrant-owned businesses and community centers and mosques. And it’s a vibrant corridor. And it’s the heart of a lot of Latino-owned and Somali-owned businesses. If you look at the stores damaged or businesses being affected, it’s predominately immigrant-owned.
Q: What do you want the world to know about the situation you’re seeing unfolding in your community right now? When you see national coverage of George Floyd’s death and the protests in Minneapolis, what are the stories you think aren’t being told that should be?
A: I think the human toll of this is something that I haven’t seen really being covered. The coverage tends to be a little bit disconnected from what people are feeling, their experiences, how they have been through this multiple times, how it’s affecting them, the trauma that this causes — the generational trauma. These kids, their parents, their grandparents, it’s something that has been going on for centuries. I think that hasn’t been explored enough. And, you know, the media tend to carry the official narrative and give more weight to that than the human voices and the community voices. I hope they will shift the focus a little bit and make it more human-centric, more community-centric than just you know, quoting talking heads or quoting officials.
You see young people being really frustrated and you wonder why. Why is everyone frustrated? Why do they hate the police? Why the cursing at the police? What’s causing that? I’m always more curious to learn about that than just covering the latest developments.
Q: And in conversations that you and your colleagues have been having with people, how have they been answering that question? Why are they feeling this way?
A: They’re saying the police harass them, they intimidate them even if they don’t do anything. They stop them when they’re even walking down the street. And that way of policing is something that really frustrates people. … You know, when you’re interacting with the young black person really upset and crying and afraid of the police, it breaks your heart. And that’s not what probably the white community experiences. And you just ask, why?
Q: What has it been like for your site to be covering this moment in Minnesota’s history, and in the United States’ history?
A: We are a small staff. We have been trying to really tackle this from unique angles because it’s something affecting a lot of people. So if you look at our coverage, we have written about the young Somalis, we have written about how the Asian community is being targeted. One of the officers is Hmong, and some people target people who have similar last names as the police officer. We have been covering how the immigrant businesses have been damaged during the protests.
Q: What has stood out or surprised you as someone who is an expert in covering these communities and has been doing it for a while?
A: The diversity of the protesters. It’s really a lot of different communities, ethnic backgrounds. This case really hit a nerve and you can see that on the street. … I’ve lived here for almost 16 years. I have never seen anything like this.

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Katai Leaves Galaxy After Wife’s Racial Social Media Posts… – Mount Royal Soccer

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You would hope that the Katai’s weren’t looking forward to an extended stay on America’s west coast.

If they were it’s all been scuppered by some strongly-worded Instagram posts from the player’s wife, Tea in which she called for people to kill protestors, which she referred to as ‘disgusting cattle’.

Now the former Alaves and Red Star Belgrade midfielder and his club have parted ways.

In what looks to all the world like a firing, LA Galaxy has called the move ‘a mutual decision’ between themselves and their player, who joined the club from Chicago Fire only in December last year.

The Galaxy released a statement condemning Tea’s since-deleted comments on Wednesday saying…

“Earlier today, the LA Galaxy were made aware of a series of racist and violent social media posts by Tea Katai, the wife of LA Galaxy midfielder Aleksandar Katai.

“The LA Galaxy stands firmly against racism of any kind, including that which suggests violence or seeks to demean the efforts of those in pursuit of racial equality.”

The player for his part had come out strongly following the comments, distancing himself from his spouse’s posts, although accepting full responsibility.

“These views are not ones that I share and are not tolerated in my family.

“Racism, particularly toward the black community, is not only prevalent in the United States and Europe, but across the globe. I strongly condemn white supremacy, racism and violence towards people of color. Black lives matter. This is a mistake from my family and I take full responsibility.

“I will ensure that my family and I take the necessary actions to learn, understand, listen and support the black community.

“I understand that it will take time to earn back the support of the people of Los Angeles. I am committed to putting in the necessary work to learn from these mistakes and be a better ally and advocate for equality going forward. I am sorry for the pain these posts have caused the LA Galaxy family and all allies in the fight against racism.”

It was not enough to save his LA Galaxy career with the club yesterday producing a terse and final statement confirming Katai’s departure…

“The LA Galaxy have mutually agreed to part with midfielder Aleksander Katai.”

Aleksander Katai with his wife Tea, author of the unacceptable Instagram posts in the wake of George Floyd’s death.

While Tea Katai’s comments are totally and unequivocally unacceptable, you wonder if the player himself has been treated fairly by the club. He did clearly distance himself from the comments, explaining they were not representative of his own views, and in fact verbally came out in support of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement.

Is it right that a player’s future at a football club can be determined in this way by comments, no matter how disgusting, made by another family member, which in the days of social media he had very little, if any, control over?

Katai has ‘accepted full responsibility’, but it must be acknowledged that was part of a carefully worded statement providing apology and certainly designed to prolong his short LA career.

Or is it correct that the former Chicago Fire player is ‘found guilty by association’ and was rightly dismissed?

What do Impact fans think? Would you have expected Montreal Impact to fire a player under the same circumstances?

Poll

Are the LA Galaxy right in dispensing with the services for Aleksander Katai due to his wife’s unacceptable Instagram posts?

  • 28%

    Yes 100%. He has to go…

    (2 votes)

  • 14%

    Not sure. It’s a grey area. I’m on the fence and think getting rid of the player is too harsh a punishment.

    (1 vote)

  • 57%

    100% No. Katai should not be held accountable for the social media interactions of his wife or any other family member.

    (4 votes)



7 votes total

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GOLDSTEIN: Media deliberately distorted what Trump said about George Floyd – Toronto Sun

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Contrary to a globally reported blunder by the media on Friday, President Donald Trump did not say a positive report on U.S. job numbers was “good news for George Floyd.”

Here’s what Trump said:

“Equal justice under the law must mean that every American receives equal treatment in every encounter with law enforcement regardless of race, color, gender, or creed. They have to receive fair treatment from law enforcement. They have to receive it. We all saw what happened last week. We can’t let that happen.

“Hopefully, George is looking down right now and saying, ‘This is a great thing that’s happening for our country.’ It’s a great day for him. It’s a great day for everybody. This is a great day for everybody. This is a great, great day in terms of equality. It’s really what our Constitution requires and it’s what our country is all about.”

Clearly, Trump’s reference to Floyd was in the context of Americans agreeing everyone must be treated equally by police, not optimistic U.S. job numbers.

Despite their obvious blunder about what Trump said, which quickly went global and erupted on social media, few media organizations have corrected it.

Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden, reacting to the inaccurate media reports, said what Trump said was “despicable.”

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Some are now arguing it was outrageous for Trump to invoke Floyd’s name  — he died in police custody, with the four fired police officers involved now facing a slew of major criminal charges — in any context.

But that deliberately ignores the point, which is that the media got the story wrong.

In another controversy involving Trump, a widely-circulated medical study published in the Lancet claiming patients with COVID-19 were more likely to die or suffer serious side effects from taking hydroxychloroquine has been retracted.

Based on this research, Trump was widely attacked for recommending the use of hydroxychloroquine and saying he was taking it himself to ward off COVID-19.

Trump should not be freelancing medical advice and it was dangerous for him to do so.

But as James Heathers, a research scientist at Boston’s Northeastern University, writing in the Guardian, observed, the retraction of the research paper is also alarming and potentially dangerous.

As Heathers wrote:

“The Lancet is one of the oldest and most respected medical journals in the world. Recently, they published an article on Covid patients receiving hydroxychloroquine with a dire conclusion: the drug increases heartbeat irregularities and decreases hospital survival rates. This result was treated as authoritative, and major drug trials were immediately halted — because why treat anyone with an unsafe drug?

“Now, that Lancet study has been retracted, withdrawn from the literature entirely, at the request of three of its authors who ‘can no longer vouch for the veracity of the primary data sources.’

“Given the seriousness of the topic and the consequences of the paper, this is one of the most consequential retractions in modern history.

“How did a paper of such consequence get discarded like a used tissue by some of its authors only days after publication? If the authors don’t trust it now, how did it get published in the first place?”

Heathers says the root problem is with the peer review process which, “at its worst … is merely window dressing that gives the unwarranted appearance of authority, a cursory process which confers no real value, enforces orthodoxy, and overlooks both obvious analytical problems and outright fraud entirely.”

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