Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 4 September 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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Apple, 12 September 2018 Media Invitation
Apple, 12 September 2018 Media Invitation (Image Credit: Apple)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

Apple expected to unveil new products on Wednesday 12 September

Apple has sent out press invitations to a media event at its headquarters in Cupertino at 10:00 PDT (18:00 BST) on Wednesday 12 September 2018.

Apple is expected to unveil details of new iPhone and Apple Watch products. In advance of this, images of a new iPhone XS and Apple Watch Series 4 have been leaked to 9To5Mac.

Apple is notoriously protective over leaks and has in the past undertaken extensive measures to find the source of leaks throughout its own headquarters and its suppliers.

Amazon’s Coverage of US Open

If you’ve been out and about in London recently you’ve no doubt seen extensive advertising by Amazon for its coverage of the US Open.

There are many things you can say about Amazon. It may not have the most visually appealing website or produce the most attractively designed products, but when it does something it does it well and very efficiently.

This appears not to be the case for its live TV coverage of the US Open which has drawn highly critical reviews. Specific areas of criticism include the picture quality and the lack of a replay option – something of an oversight given the time difference between the US and UK. (Amazon)
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Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 28 August 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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Arizona Republic, New York Post Front Pages - Sunday 26 August 2018
Arizona Republic, New York Post Front Pages – Sunday 26 August 2018

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

All The News That’s Fit To Print

If you were at home this past Bank Holiday weekend and happened to Google the opening times for your local supermarket, you would have been presented with these search results in Google:

Google Search Results Extract

Articles like this, which don’t even contain any practically useful information, have helped propel The Sun ahead of the juggernaut MailOnline in the UK online newspaper market with more than 30 million users a month. The printed circulation figures for all UK newspapers make for dismal reading. It’s probably not what its writers envisaged when signing up for journalism school, but that’s Google’s algorithms for you. (The Drum)

Also of note this week:

Apple, a company notoriously protective against leaks, is expected to unveil three new iPhones next month, based around the design of the iPhoneX. (Bloomberg)

Fox News’ Summer of Mistakes and Apologies. (The Hollywood Reporter)

Spotify has released the most streamed songs of the summer. Top of the charts is “In My Feelings” by Drake which was streamed by no less than 393 million times. This is followed by “Girls Like You” by Maroon 5 (featuring Cardi B) which just managed a mere 293 million streams and “I Like It” (featuring J Balvin and Bad Bunny) with 289 million streams. (Spotify)

How the US newspapers covered the death of Senator John McCain. (Mario Garcia)

Previous editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin

Here are the latest editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin:

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 21 August 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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Greg James, BBC Radio 1
Greg James, BBC Radio 1 (Image Credit: BBC)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

The Nation’s Favourite

The Radio 1 Breakfast Show may not be the most popular radio show in the UK. It is comfortably beaten by Chris Evans on Radio 2 and the Today Programme. However, it is still one of the most prestigious and for many DJs the ultimate career ambition.

Yesterday, Greg James took the helm of the show, replacing Nick Grimshaw after six years. And it’s a very different style of show. Nick Grimshaw was keen to emphasise his circle of celebrity friends from Harry Styles to Daisy Lowe. He once missed a show after he phoned in sick after a weekend partying in Istanbul to celebrate the opening of an outpost of the Soho House. Greg seems keen to put interaction with the listeners first, as per this profile by BuzzFeed.

It normally takes time for a new breakfast show to settle in. However, the first show got off to a very confident start and initial reviews are very positive. An achievement in itself.

euronews – One To Watch

Global news channels are bit like airport hotels. There’s a certain emptiness to them. As BBC World News and CNN International broadcast across multiple timezones, there is no sense of time or place in their output.

One of the lessor known channels is euronews. Based in Lyon, it was founded in 1993 and has a considerably lower profile than its rivals.

However, that may change shortly. NBC Universal, owner of NBC News in the US, acquired a stake in the channel last year. Deborah Turness, president of NBC News International, is overseeing a revamp of the channel that includes a new schedule of live programming and journalists in the field self-reporting on smartphones.

Before joining NBC, Deborah Turness was Head of ITV News and regularly beat the BBC and Sky to a number of scoops. There are already signs this is having an impact. When news broke of suspected terrorist attack in Westminster last week, a euronews reporter Vincent McAviney was already on the ground to film the immediate police response.

There’s more detail on euronews’ plans in a profile by The Drum.

euronews bulletins will also be shown on London Underground platforms such as Green Park and Oxford Circus.

Previous editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin

Here are the latest editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin:

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 14 August 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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BA First WiFi
(Image Credit: British Airways)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

The Fox News Presidency

The symbiotic relationship between President Trump and Fox News has long been established.

The President is known to be an avid viewer of its morning show “Fox & Friends”. Many of his tweets can be traced back to Fox News “talking points”. Trump is also known to speak regularly to Fox host Sean Hannity who, every weekday evening, begins his show with an exhausting display of mental gymnastics in a monologue of some grand conspiracy involving Hillary Clinton.

The relationship between Fox News and the Presidency traces its origins even further. The founding CEO of Fox News, the late Roger Ailes, was an advisor to President Nixon and knew how to harness the power of television.

Now a former Fox News executive, Bill Shine, as Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications is producing Trump’s image as how Trump sees the Presidency: a TV show where its all about image, ratings and a simple narrative of winners and losers. (Seattle Times) (The Washington Post)

On a related note, on Thursday 16 August 2018, more than 100 US newspapers will publish an editorial criticising Trump’s anti-press rhetoric. (CNN Money)

The Tyranny Of Clickbait

We’re sure anyone reading this is familiar with the concept of “clickbait”.

Websites are heavily dependent on click-throughs from Google searches and social media, and many digital journalists paid according to clicks. This means there is no press release so ordinary that cannot be given the appearance of a major revelation with a clickbait headline: “This will surprise you/melt your heart”. “This is what happened…” “Here’s why…” The irony of course is when a website has a major exclusive, it simply shouts it.

Not only is it patronising to readers and disrespectful of their time, it is tiresomely predictable. Everybody is doing it. As The Drum notes everybody following the same rules is stifling creativity.

In the words of ad agency BBH, when the world zigs, zag.
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Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 7 August 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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BA First WiFi
(Image Credit: British Airways)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

Sky Wars

The long-running battle for ownership of Sky in Europe should reach a head this week.

Fox and Comcast have been locked in a bidding war for Sky after Disney launched a now successful bid for the entertainment assets of Fox. The deadline for Fox to launch a counter bid to Comcast expires this Thursday.

The New York Times reports on Disney’s advanced plans to launch its own streaming service dubbed “Disneyflix”. It is expected that as part of this Disney will remove much of its own content from Netflix.

Comcast it has to be said does not have the best of reputations in the US. We’ve experienced at first hand its broadband network outages. It also owns NBC which let go of journalist Ronan Farrow who had been working on one of the biggest stories to break in Hollywood – the expose of Harvey Weinstein. NBC News has also faced questions over its own workplace culture which led to the firing of Today Show presenter Matt Later last year.

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Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 31 July 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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Lee Lin Chin - SBS Australia
Lee Lin Chin – SBS Australia (Image Credit: SBS Australia)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

Lee Lin Chin Departs SBS Australia

Readers who have spent any time in Australia will be aware of its multilingual and multicultural Special Broadcasting Service channel.

The channel shows a mix of news bulletins from around the world and factual and cultural programming, including the Eurovision final. One of its most famous faces newscaster Lee Lin Chin, also famous for announcing Australia’s Eurovision results to the world, departed the broadcaster last week.

Lee Lin Chin, which doesn’t in any way detract from her journalistic credentials, also attracted a cult following for her sartorial choices. (SBS)

Facebook in the dock again

Facebook continues to battle the response by Governments around the world to abuse of the platform and its use in promoting fake news.

Under German domestic law against hate speech, it has been forced to delete thousands of offensive posts. In the UK, the Department for Culture Media and Sport House Of Commons Select Committee has published its interim report on fake news. This is particularly pertinent as the Government and Parliament struggle to translate the narrow 2016 EU Referendum result into a workable solution for the UK’s future relationship with Europe. Here are the ads posted on Facebook by organisations campaigning in favour of the UK leaving the European Union in 2016.
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Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 24 July 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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New York Daily News Front Pages Saturday 14 July & Tuesday 17 July 2018
New York Daily News Front Pages Saturday 14 July & Tuesday 17 July 2018 (Image Credit: New York Daily News)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

New York Daily News Editorial Staff Slashed

The American newspaper market is a different world to the ferociously competitive daily tabloid market of the UK. Whilst most American newspapers have a closer relationship to the truth, many are local monopolies and can be just a little too earnest.

The one exception is New York which has two tabloids, The New York Daily News and the New York Post. The former is owned by Tronc which also owns the Chicago Herald Tribune and, until recently, The Los Angeles Times. The latter is owned by Rupert Murdoch.

The New York Daily News is known for its uncompromising front pages and campaigning local journalism. Tronc has announced that it is to slash its editorial staff by 50%. Many staff have already announced their departures.

There is little better news for the daily newspaper market in the UK. Most are reporting double digit circulation declines with The Daily Boris Johnson Telegraph reporting a 23% year on year fall to 370,613 copies a day and there is little sign of this abating.

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Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 17 July 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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BA First WiFi
(Image Credit: British Airways)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

Twitter Cleans Up

If you’ve logged on to Twitter recently you may have noticed that some accounts you follow have experienced large drops in follower numbers.

There has long been a common practice of “buying” followers on Twitter, and other platforms such as Instagram, from bot accounts. The biggest clues are sharp rises in follower counts and relatively low levels of responses to tweets. A Twitter user with followers in the tens of thousands should have a signifiant response to every tweet. It’s a very short term and self-destructive move as it destroys a user’s credibility.

Twitter has previously responded to this by locking accounts that exhibit the behaviour of bots. Twitter is now in the process of removing locked accounts from follower counts. As a consequence some users, including some aviation commentators it has to be said, have experienced sharp falls in their followers.

On a related note, given events in Helsinki this week, NPR reports on how the Internet Research Agency in St. Petersburg set up “sleeper” accounts to build trust in users ahead of its influence campaign during the 2016 US Presidential Election.

BBC Under Fire

Brexit continues to dominate the political climate in the UK and, barring some shock event, will continue to do for at least the next 9 months.

Despite two years having passed since the referendum result, attitudes towards the UK’s departure from the European Union have barely shifted.

There has been very deep frustration, particularly those who supported Remain, at the BBC’s coverage. Notably its failure to carry out original investigative journalism which other outlets such as Channel 4 and The Observer have done. Also, under fire is its painstaking pursuit of “balance” giving all sides of every argument equal weight which has arguably given the likes of Tim Martin of Wetherspoon and hardcore Conservative Eurosceptics more air time than they merit.

Traditionally supportive voices such as former Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger are raising the alarm. The Observer columnist Nick Cohen has also penned a polemic for The New York Review of Books “How The BBC Lost The Plot On Brexit” to which the BBC has issued a rebuttal.
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Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 10 July 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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BA First WiFi
(Image Credit: British Airways)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

HBO And Chill

The American cable network HBO has long been world renowned for high quality TV series such as “Sex and the City” and “The Sopranos”.

Something that it is not widely know to those who don’t have access to the channel itself is that these shows make up only a very small amount of HBO’s scheduled programming.

HBO has long favoured quality over quantity. It may not produce many shows a year, but when it does, they are critically acclaimed hits. This is in contrast to Netflix which throws of billions of dollars at new shows, far beyond what most can keep up with, and with varying degrees of success.

HBO’s parent company Time Warner has recently been acquired by AT&T. Based on account of internal meeting reported by The New York Times, HBO is to be tasked with increasing both the quantity of programmes it produces and subscriber numbers, with unease over the impact on quality. (New York Times)

A Tribute to The Guardian from an unlikely corner

A memorial service was held last week for the late former editor of The Guardian, Peter Preston.

Although The Daily Mail and The Guardian share little in common in terms of political views, its respective journalists still have a grudging admiration for the technical quality of each other’s publications.

Paul Dacre, the much revered and feared editor of the Daily Mail, delivered a tribute to Peter Preston, that is as much a tribute to the end of the printed newspaper.

“The reason, of course, was that he was quite simply, a print man. He loved that magical symbiosis of newsprint, pictures, headlines, fonts and beautiful words that at their best can make a paper a functioning part of society rather than a commentary at its edges.

“Inevitably, sadly, those Fleet Street skills needed for that magic symbiosis are dying in an internet age which seems to have a voracious need for free, somewhat crudely expressed, round-the-clock information and gratification.

“Yes, of course, journalism will survive and may, one day, flourish again. But it will be different. Whether it will, in future, have the creative beauty and sheer power of Peter’s Guardian, I don’t know.

Dacre who in the 1999 remarked “A lot of people say that the internet is the future for newspapers. Well, I say to that: bullshit.com” has always had a very difficult relationship with technology. He effectively disowns the Daily Mail’s online presence. Dacre is due to retire as editor of the Daily Mail in November which is likely to presage a decline in the Daily Mail’s political influence as a print product.

Also of note this week:

A great scoop by BuzzFeed: How The Times sacked a reporter for posting fake reviews on its website to secure free tickets. (BuzzFeed)

Sacha Baron Cohen returns to television with a 7 part series “Who Is America?”. Produced by the American network Showtime it will premier in the UK on Channel 4 on Monday 16 July. (Channel 4)

Previous editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin

Here are the latest editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin:

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com

Travel Media & Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 3 July 2018

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in media and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST.

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The BBC Micro B Computer (Image Credit: London Air Travel)
The BBC Micro B Computer (Image Credit: London Air Travel)

Hello and welcome to our weekly travel media and technology bulletin featuring the latest developments on media and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 06:00 BST.

BBC Computer Literacy Project Archive

If you were a child of the 1980s in the UK, you were no doubt familiar with the BBC Micro B computer.

The computer was built for the BBC’s Computer Literacy Project. This was a Government supported initiative which ran from 1980-1989. The computer was a fixture in schools all over the UK, whether to write programmes in BASIC or play games like “Grannie’s Garden” or “Chuckie Egg”. The project was supported a by a large number of TV programmes including “Making The Most Of The Micro”.

An extensive archive of TV programmes and BBC Micro computer software has been curated and is hosted by the BBC.

It goes without saying that by any measure the hardware and TV programmes look very dated, but at the time this was a groundbreaking project. It was also an era of co-operation between the Government and the BBC for the public good you don’t see much evidence of today.

Trouble at The Today Programme

The most popular breakfast radio programme in London cannot found on Capital FM or LBC. It is on BBC Radio 4. By some considerable distance, The Today Programme is by far the most popular, and influential, morning radio programme in London.

However, it has had mixed fortunes over the past couple of years, particularly since the 2016 EU Referendum result. Its listeners have fallen. Some of its presenters, notably John Humphrys, have been charged with bias. Its painstaking attempts to be balanced by treating two sides of a debate as equals, regardless of the weight of supporting evidence, has also been criticised. As has the limited size of its contacts book for contributors.

In a fair and balanced article, The Observer’s Miranda Sawyer takes the temperature of Today.

On a related note, Eddie Mair, presenter of Radio 4’s PM, who once said to Boris Johnson on a BBC TV interview “You’re a nasty piece of work, aren’t you?”, is to leave the BBC and join LBC from September in an as yet unspecific slot.

Russian Interference in 2016 EU Referendum

On the subject of the 2016 EU Referendum, the story of Russian interference is slowly gaining traction.

However, like the issue of phone hacking at the News Of The World, there is a degree of wilful blindness on the part of much of the UK press. Indeed, the US press, which is looking at Russian interference in the 2016 US Presidential Election, is paying more attention. (New York Magazine)

The Sun Sets On The Sun King

As Rupert Murdoch prepares to sell the bulk of his media empire to Disney, leaving behind Fox News and many local US TV stations and what were thought to be carefully honed plans to pass on his legacy to his children, The Washington Post looks at the background to the deal. The The New York Times looks at the symbiotic relationship between President Trump and one of the most divisive Murdoch properties, Fox News.

Also of note this week:

Apple is to rebuild its Apple Maps app entirely from scratch. (TechCrunch)

The Economist on Netflix. (The Economist)

Previous editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin

Here are the latest editions of the Travel Media & Technology Bulletin:

Our weekly Travel Media & Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 06:00 BST. If you have any comments or suggestions, please e-mail us at mail [at] londonairtravel.com