Media Insider: Rolling Stone Sold to Penske Media, Most Engaging Stories of 2017, Innovations Fighting Fake News

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

Rolling Stone

Source: PRNewsFoto/Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone Magazine Has a New Owner

Penske Media Corp., publisher of WWD, Variety, Hollywood Life, and other publications, has bought a majority stake in Wenner Media. The deal gives Penske control over the company’s 51 percent stake in its flagship brand, Rolling Stone. The remaining 49 percent will remain under the ownership of Singapore-based BandLabs Technologies. According to Fortune, the magazine will remain editorially independent, and co-founder Jann Wenner will stay on as editorial director. Terms of the deal haven’t been disclosed, but its value is reportedly just over $100 million.

Related: Rolling Stone Settles Last Remaining Lawsuit Over Controversial UVA Rape Story

The 100 Most Engaging Stories of the Year

Chartbeat, the content intelligence partner for more than 50,000 leading media sites, explored the themes and stories that engaged readers most in 2017. From investigations into longstanding rumors of indeceny to reporting that braved the elements, it was a year of extraordinary journalism. Topping the list is Alex Tizon’s “My Family’s Slave,” published by The Atlantic. Other notable stories examined the Las Vegas shooting, Hurricane Irma, Trump’s first year, and Senate candidate Roy Moore.

Read the most engaging story of the year: My Family’s Slave

Fighting Fake News: Key Innovations in 2017 from Platforms, Universities and More

“The term ‘fake news’ entered the mainstream consciousness in 2016, but it has carried on through 2017, for better or for worse,” writes MediaShift’s Bianca Fortis. Deliberate misinformation has always existed in the media world. This year the conversation intensified, leaving many wondering whether it’s possible to solve the problem of fake news. It remains to be seen, but several projects are working to find out. Of the most noteable: The Fake News Challenge tasked programmers with developing machine learning tools that could help flag fake news stories; Storyzy is using machine learning to specifically fact-check quotes.

Speaking of fake: Funny Or Die, Bustle and a Bunch of Other Publishers Unwittingly Bought Fake Traffic

Pivoting to video is the biggest trend in media — but it may not prove as lucrative as publishers hope

Twitter starts enforcing new policies on violence, abuse, and hateful conduct

Twitter will begin enforcing new rules it announced last month to combat abuse and hateful conduct, including threats of violence and physical harm. “The new rules expand policies to abusive or threatening content in usernames and profiles, and to accounts affiliated with hate groups both on and off platform,” reports The Verge. Twitter will require tweets that glorify violence or the perpetrators of a violent act be removed, and will permanently suspend accounts that repeatedly violate this rule. There is one notable exception: the policy changes do not apply to military or government entities.

Facebook is also enforcing stricter policies, but around video shows — and it’s affecting publishers.

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Anna Jasinski is senior manager of audience relations at PR Newswire and former magazine journalist. Follow her on Twitter at @annamjasinski and @BeyondBylines.

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