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3:10 PM ET, December 15, 2017

Mediagazer

 Top News: 
Tom Kludt / CNNMoney:
Trump congratulated Rupert Murdoch on Disney deal; there's no admission or denial he spoke with Murdoch ahead of the deal to confirm Murdoch would keep Fox News  —  Disney-Fox deal gets White House praise  —  Disney's $52.4 billion deal to acquire a significant portion of 21st Century Fox …
RELATED:
Michael Wolff / Hollywood Reporter:
A look at the dynamics among Rupert Murdoch and his children, and how their business interests may have influenced the Disney deal  —  When the media titan unloads the bulk of Fox to Disney rather than letting it pass to his heirs, it proves he has always has had a favorite Murdoch — himself.
Discussion: Bloomberg
David Folkenflik / NPR:
Disney-Fox deal gives Disney controlling Hulu stake, a Sky stake, a network of local sports cable channels; Fox gets to cash out and resolve succession plans
The Walt Disney Company:
Disney to acquire 21st Century Fox, including stakes in Sky and Hulu, after spinoff of certain businesses like Fox News, for $52.4B in stock
Mark Sweney / The Guardian:
Post-merger, “New Fox” to include live news, sports, and the Fox brand, as a return to “our roots as a lean, aggressive, challenger brand”, per Lachlan Murdoch
Tony Romm / Recode:
A coalition of state attorneys general, led by the New York AG, pledge to sue the FCC for repealing net neutrality rules  —  States like Washington and New York are gearing up to fight the FCC's recent repeal  —  The United States is about to go to war with itself over net neutrality.
RELATED:
Nilay Patel / The Verge:
The inability of Ajit Pai and Republican FCC commissioners to make a fact-based case for repeal of popular net neutrality rules will be a problem for GOP
Isaac Stone Fish / Washington Post:
After China's Integrated Whale Media bought a majority stake in Forbes in 2014, several cases of editorial meddling have raised questions about independence  —  When a Chinese company buys a major American magazine, does the publication censor its coverage of China?
Casey Newton / The Verge:
Snap launches Lens Studio, a Mac and Windows app that lets users build their own AR lenses  —  Let a thousand hot dogs bloom  —  Snap's second official app is a tool that lets you design and build augmented reality lenses for Snapchat.  The company today announced Lens Studio, a design app for Mac and Windows desktop computers.
Shruthi Muraleedharan / Facebook:
Facebook debuts Snooze, a News Feed feature to temporarily unfollow a person, Page, or group for 30 days  —  One of our core News Feed values is giving people more control.  Over the next week, we're launching Snooze, which will give you the option to temporarily unfollow a person, Page or group for 30 days.
Janko Roettgers / Variety:
Vevo CEO Erik Huggers Is Stepping Down  —  Erik Huggers is stepping down as the president and CEO of the major-label-owned music video platform Vevo, the company announced Friday.  CFO Alan Price will be stepping in as interim CEO while the company is looking for new leadership.
Discussion: TechCrunch, Music Week and Axios
Steve Dent / Engadget:
YouTube debuts 360-degree YouTube VR app on Steam in early access for HTC Vive, but users of the beta are reporting several problems from bugs to crashes  —  There's a lot of VR content out there, but much of it is for one platform or another — what works on Gear VR may not on Daydream, the HTC Vive or the Oculus Rift.
David Shepardson / Reuters:
Sources: FCC to fine Sinclair Broadcasting $13.3M after it failed to disclose programming that aired on local TV stations was sponsored by a cancer institute  —  WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Communications Commission plans to fine Sinclair Broadcasting Corp $13.3 million after it failed …
Discussion: @hshaban
Jamie Grierson / The Guardian:
BBC appoints Fran Unsworth, currently director of BBC World Service Group, as director of news and current affairs, replacing James Harding  —  Head of World Service Group to take up role as director of news and current affairs after departure of James Harding
Discussion: Press Gazette
Sid Bedingfield / Washington Post:
How John G. Briggs Jr., a reporter for The New York Times in the 1950s, secretly held a side gig attacking perceived liberal bias including that of his employer  —  The untold story of the double agent who attacked the paper from within  —  The Washington Post reporters who turned the tables …
 
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 More News: 
Mark Sweney / The Guardian:
BT and Sky sign content-sharing deal: BT customers get access to Sky Atlantic, among other channels; Sky, BT customers gain access to all Premier League matches
Jason Koebler / Motherboard:
Motherboard and Vice to build and document a Brooklyn community internet that will connect to NYC mesh network and will not rely on a traditional ISP
Ben Fox Rubin / CNET:
Amazon says it will start selling Apple TV and Google Chromecast again, two years after removing them
 Earlier Picks: 
Jem Aswad / Variety:
Pandora begins letting users listen to music of their choice for free by unlocking a complimentary session of Premium after watching a 15-second ad
Discussion: TechCrunch and Pandora Blog
Ewen MacAskill Defence / The Guardian:
UK tribunal recognizes WikiLeaks as a media organization, which could help Assange's defense against extradition to the US on press freedom grounds
Reuters:
Sources: Spotify shares have been priced at $4,000+ in recent private trades, up 20% over the past few months, valuing the company at ~$19B