Media Insider: Advertisers Bet Big on March Madness, Politicians Take ‘Bipartisan Road Trip’ on Facebook Live, News App Bursts Your Filter Bubble

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round-up of media stories from the week.


Photo by Phil Roeder used under CC BY 2.0.

As Ratings Go Down, March Madness Advertising Goes Up

March Madness viewership is on the decline, but that doesn’t seem to matter to advertisers. Media Life reports that advertisers spent $1.24 billion last year during the college hoops tournament, a five percent increase from the previous year. Ads were concentrated to the first weekend, likely due to the initial hype, when underdogs emerge and brackets get busted. The greatest value for advertisers, however, is getting in front of hard-to-reach millennial men.

Cable news may be a new outlet for advertisers to target millennials. A New York Post article revealed that millennials are getting their news from cable TV.

1 Car, 2 Politicians and Facebook Live: What Could Go Wrong?

Two politicians from Texas broadcasted live on Facebook, and got it right. During a road trip from Texas to Washington, DC, Republican Will Hurd and Democrat Beto O’Rourke candidly spoke about everything from ideal driving positions to using FitBit, reports CNET. They also answered policy questions from viewers. Mark Zuckerberg shared the video, praising the duo for “great use of Facebook Live for civic engagement.”

Related: Twitter to Expand Live Video Efforts by Opening API to Media Partners

Here’s Why You Should Listen to this Podcast about Being Muslim in America

See Something Say Something was named one of the best new podcasts of 2016 by The New York Times. If that’s not enough to get listeners to tune in, BuzzFeed’s Meg Cramer provides even more reasons to check out the cultural podcast. The host, Ahmed Ali Akbar, invites Muslim Americans to share their stories about stereotypes, discuss feelings for Mahershala Ali, and search for the best cup of chai in New York. The podcast is back with a new episode about resisting unlawful questioning at the border.

ICYMI: Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch hosted a roundtable discussion with Muslims who work in Sports Media

A News App Aims to Burst Filter Bubbles by Nudging Readers Toward a More “Balanced” Media Diet

Read Across the Aisle wants to help news consumers take in a more balanced news diet. The app is designed to track the news sources people read and sends alerts when news consumption leans heavily towards the left or right, reports NiemanLab. Read Across the Aisle is currently only available to iOS users and tracks readership of 20 sources. Huffington Post is on the far left of the spectrum and Fox News is on the right.

Earlier this year, Quartz provided a guide to seeing beyond the cozy filter bubble

AMI Purchases US Weekly

American Media, Inc. announced a deal worth $100 million to purchase Wenner Media’s US Weekly. CEO David Pecker is excited to add US Weekly to the list of AMI brands and says he is “looking forward to continuing its great editorial standards its loyal and growing audience expects.” According to AdWeek, the statement appears to address US Weekly staff concerns about layoffs and loosening standards, given the differences between US Weekly and other AMI publications.

More in media business: Comcast Corporation Launches Accelerator for Entertainment, Media Startups

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Tabresha B. Langham is a Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She also is a social media junkie, foodie, music fiend and Auburn University Alumn (War Eagle!). Tune into her insights as a social curator at @PRNmedia, or follow @TabreshaL.

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