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1:15 PM ET, November 18, 2017

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 Top News: 
Bloomberg:
With ads hard to sell and VC funds hard to raise, sources say media startups like Defy Media and Uproxx consider following Mashable, selling to bigger companies  —  Defy Media, Uproxx also weigh sale as capital to grow dries up  —  Web publishers that made ‘pivot to video’ struggle to sell ads
RELATED:
Dylan Byers / CNNMoney:
Sources: IAC is exploring selling The Daily Beast, but the company has no formal sales effort in place  —  Digital media is facing a reckoning.  —  The start-ups that were once the darlings of the industry are facing budget shortfalls and revenue declines as they struggle to survive …
Natalie Jarvey / Hollywood Reporter:
Interview with Funny or Die CEO Mike Farah on partnering with AMC, remaining independent, scale, and how most virality is driven by Facebook  —  Mike Farah discusses the evolution of digital content, partnering with AMC and charting an independent path: “I don't like to chase.
Natalie Jarvey / Hollywood Reporter:
Sources: Vice Media suspends Jason Mojica, head of documentary film unit, as part of an investigation into sexual harassment allegations  —  Jason Mojica has been head of Vice's documentary film unit since August 2016.  —  Vice Media has suspended Jason Mojica, head of its documentary film unit …
Ryan Ori / Chicago Tribune:
Tronc says the Chicago Tribune will leave Tribune Tower in Q2 2018, leasing space in a building overlooking Millennium Park  —  Built in 1925, the neo-Gothic Tribune Tower was designed by New York architects Raymond Hood and John Mead Howells, who won a contest held by Tribune co-publishers …
Amanda Robb / Rolling Stone:
An investigation into the roots of Pizzagate: the real people behind some of the social accounts that later were amplified by bots  —  Inside the web of conspiracy theorists, Russian operatives, Trump campaigners and Twitter bots who manufactured the ‘news’ that Hillary Clinton ran a pizza-restaurant child-sex ring
Tom Turula / Business Insider:
Spotify announces it has acquired Soundtrap, a collaborative online music recording startup, reportedly for at least $30M  —  Spotify is buying Swedish music tech startup Soundtrap for an undisclosed amount.  —  Soundtrap is a collaborative online recording studio that was valued at $25 million (SEK 207 million) last year.
Benjamin Mullin / Wall Street Journal:
Axios raises $20M to fund newsroom expansion, plans to increase staffing to 150 by the end of 2018  —  The 10-month-old media startup plans to increase staffing to 150 by the end of 2018, develop new coverage areas, and expand its data analysis and product offerings
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
YouTube takes down Toy Freaks, a kid-focused channel that had over 8.5M subscribers, as it tightens enforcement of child endangerment policies  —  Following consumer outrage over YouTube's handling of disturbing videos aimed at children on its network, the company has now banned …
 
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 More News: 
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Twitter confirms it is testing a feature that will make it easier to publish tweetstorms
Keith J. Kelly / New York Post:
Forbes says it is reducing print frequency from 14 issues/year to 10 and also cutting 20 people from payroll
Maxwell Tani / Business Insider:
Vox Media editorial and video staffers announce plans to join Writers Guild of America East
 Earlier Picks: 
The Guardian:
At News Corp AGM, Murdoch says “our hands are...full making our existing papers viable” and that digital advertising has been “tremendously damaging to print”
Sean Illing / Vox:
New study finds China uses “cheerleading”, or flooding the internet with positive news in order to eclipse bad news, as a method to manipulate its population
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:
Facebook rebrands Mentions, which was only available for verified accounts, as Creator app, opens it to all; app available on iOS now and Android within months