Media Insider: Sarah Palin Loses Times Defamation Suit, WaPo Adds 70 Newsroom Jobs

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s roundup of media news stories from the week.

Exterior photo of New York Times building

Sarah Palin loses defamation case against The New York Times

On Tuesday, jurors decided The New York Times did not defame Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential candidate, in a June 2017 editorial that wrongly claimed a link between an ad from her PAC and a mass shooting months later. It was a one-two punch for Palin. The unanimous verdict came a day after the presiding judge, U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff, ruled that he would set aside the jury’s verdict — whatever it might be — and dismiss the case. He said Palin had failed to make a sufficient argument that the Times had acted with “actual malice” to let the case be determined by a jury.

In more legal news, Lee Enterprises wins a favorable ruling against Alden Global Capital.

Washington Post creates 70 newsroom jobs as it plans to enhance health, tech and climate coverage

The Washington Post announced plans to create more than 70 newsroom jobs as it seeks to enhance its coverage of health, technology, the climate and other areas. The expansion comes after the Post last year added 150 roles across its newsroom, which has more than 1,000 employees overall and is larger now than at any point in its history. Nearly 20 of the new roles will be in health, wellness and well-being. “Audience research has consistently shown that health and wellness and mental health coverage are top areas of interest to readers,” said Executive Editor Sally Buzbee. “We believe this explosion in interest represents a tremendous opportunity for robust, multiplatform coverage.”

The Associated Press also announced it is hiring about 20 journalists around the globe as part of a sweeping climate journalism initiative.

Esportudo, a Sports Media Startup or Latin Fans, Raises $1.6 Million

Latino sports media company Esportudo has closed a $1.6 million seed round led by Vice Ventures. The round brings Esportudo’s total funding to more than $2.3 million. Esportudo is a tech-centric content provider targeting Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking sports fans. Its apps and social media accounts already generate more than 300 million monthly views spanning a host of media offerings: written stories, podcasts, videos, newsletters and more.

Another sports media company, WSC Sports, raised $100 million in a series D funding round.

Financial Times nears 1 million digital-only subscribers

The Financial Times will soon reach 1 million digital-only subscribers. The company has seen subscriptions surge in recent months amid efforts to expand globally outside of the UK and experiments with subscriber-only products. In total, the company has 1.17 million paid subscribers and will reach 1 million digital-only subscribers later this month, according to internal estimates. It’s unclear how many of those subscribers are on promotional plans. Roughly 500,000 subscribers come from the UK, with the U.S. its second-biggest market.

Also from Axios: Facing saturation in the U.S., media giants are looking to India for growth.

Editor & Publisher partners with The Diversity Pledge Institute

Editor & Publisher announced a new partnership with The Diversity Pledge Institute, a nonprofit organization addressing newsroom diversity. The organizations will provide training, mentoring and job placement services for journalists of color, including imminent and new graduates. They will also provide resources and coaching to guide employers in recruiting and retaining diverse talent. E&P has also launched a new resource site called “Diversity Spotlight,” which features exclusive editorial content and links to all relevant resources and stories to help publishers find relevant content in one location and create a more diverse and inclusive workplace.

Nielsen is also addressing media diversity by launching a new program, Diverse Media Equity, designed to elevate the visibility of diverse-owned media companies with advertisers and agencies.

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Maria Perez is director of web operations at Cision. In her spare time, she enjoys playing word games, watching too much TV, and chasing squirrels with her dog Molly.

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