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Earnings update: Netflix and Snap report Q1 after the bell today. Both are experiencing record engagement due to the pandemic.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Local newsrooms have been hit hard by the crisis over the past month, but several are planning expansions that can provide a much-needed shot of optimism for the industry.
Driving the news: McClatchy plans to launch a new digital local news outlet called "The Longmont Leader" this spring, serving the residents of Longmont, Colorado, executives tell Axios.
"We're in middle of global pandemic, and local news is more a important need than ever," says Mandy Jenkins, general manager of The Compass Experiment. "We're just going to jump in and try to make a quick impact on the community."
6AM City, a local news company centered around newsletters, is planning a significant growth effort this year in markets across the southeast, its COO Ryan Heafy tells Axios.
Other efforts to bolster local journalism are still underway. Report for America, an initiative of The GroundTruthProject that places emerging journalists into local newsrooms, will announce on Thursday a large new class of corps members that it will place into local newsrooms this upcoming year.
Be smart: There's some historical precedent for newsrooms launching during financial crises, with the most famous example being Henry Luce launching Fortune Magazine, one of the first serious business magazines, in 1930 during the early months of the Great Depression.
The Axios mobile app is here, letting you easily follow my stories and updates, along with a feed of our most important Axios stories.
Why it matters: The app captures our thinking on the future of news and newsletters — a watch-listen-read experience that loads very fast.
Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios
Virtual competitions, reruns of classic games and sports documentaries are filling a void for both TV networks and fans during the coronavirus pandemic, Axios' Kendall Baker and I write.
The big picture: All the substitute programming in the world isn't going to make up for a loss of live sports. In the past 90 days, each of the top 9 cable sports networks have lost more than 25% of their audiences compared to January, per data from Samba TV.
Driving the news: ESPN's "The Last Dance," which chronicles Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls' 1998 championship run, averaged a record-breaking 6.1 million viewers on Sunday night, the network said Monday.
Between the lines: CBS' Masters rewind drew 2.2 million viewers, virtual racing started off strong but has since lost steam, and ESPN's H.O.R.S.E. challenge drew just 686,000 viewers.
Advocacy and corporate reputation television ads are spiking, while other industries continue to pull back spend, according to data from Advertising Analytics.
Why it matters: Brands are expected by consumers to address the coronavirus issue in a direct and empathetic tone.
The big picture: Advocacy, or any type of cause and appeal advertising, usually recedes during election years, because corporations and interest groups like to hold off messaging to lawmakers until elections are over and they know which party will control Congress and the White House.
Between the lines: More brands are flocking to television than this time last year, owing to more people watching TV, according to data from iSpot TV.
Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios
Many of the biggest advertising holding groups are forecasting that their clients will severely pull back on ad spend due to the coronavirus.
The big picture: In a note to clients Tuesday morning, MoffettNathanson senior analyst Michael Nathanson predicted the drop in organic growth during the coronavirus crisis will be steeper than the financial crisis for major ad agencies holding groups like WPP, Omnicom and Interpublic (IPG).
The state of play: Publicis Groupe chief executive officer Arthur Sadoun told investors last Monday that he expects a far worse ad decline than the the 10% plunge during the financial crisis, after the company bumped up its earnings report.
Go deeper: Ad market expected to take a big hit in 2020
Bloomberg Media is offering free subscriptions to college and grad students worldwide for three months starting Wednesday, April 22. They'll have free access to Bloomberg.com and its mobile app until July 31.
Why it matters: A typical monthly Bloomberg subscription is $34.99, although U.S. students can access it for $9.99, which makes this is a pretty expensive giveaway, particularly for international students.
Details: Students can register with their university address for verification. Free subscriptions will not include access to The Information, which Bloomberg began offering bundled subscriptions to earlier this year.
The big picture: Bloomberg's offer follow similar efforts, like that from The New York Times and Verizon, to offer students free access to what's typically costly journalism during the coronavirus crisis.
President Trump's latest guidelines for "Opening Up America Again" may be too optimistic for things like movies theaters and concerts, analysts predict.
Georgia’s governor said yesterday that the state will reopen theaters on April 27, granted that they take strict social distancing and safety precautions.
Yes, but: Even if distressed theater chains, concert venues, ticketing platforms and politicians are eager for out-of-home entertainment to re-open, surveys show that consumer sentiment around attending leisure events is still largely behind the federal government's plans to open up.
By the numbers: According to a new Morning Consult survey, about a third of U.S. adults say they won't be comfortable going to out of home entertainment for another 3-6 months, and about a quarter say they wouldn't go for at least another six months.
The bottom line: Analysts say that they expect theater chains to take extra precautions upon opening, including additional cleaning and distancing measures, but even with those efforts, consumers will still have doubts until there's a vaccine.
President Trump's presence during the coronavirus pandemic completely dwarfs Joe Biden's across nearly every media channel. As the president riffs for hours in front of TV cameras, Biden is chugging away on virtual livestreams — practically unnoticed, Axios' Neal Rothschild, Alexi McCammond and I write.
Reality check: The extra exposure for Trump hasn’t necessarily achieved his goals. The president’s approval rating has taken a 6-point hit since late March, as two-thirds of Americans in a Pew survey saw him as taking action too slowly on the coronavirus response.
Photo Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Facebook's decision to take down some events organized by protesters against state and local pandemic measures is putting conflicts between public health and free speech into stark relief, Axios' Scott Rosenberg writes.
Why it matters: Facebook keeps finding itself playing the role of government without either the machinery to do the job right or the accountability that it should bear.
Fandango, the digital movie ticketing company owned mostly by NBCUniversal, has acquired the free, ad-supported video service Vudu from Walmart, Vudu announced Monday. Deal terms weren't disclosed.
Why it matters: Big media companies are investing in ad-supported streaming services that could help them transition their dying TV ad businesses to digital while also bolstering their streaming offerings.
The big picture: Vudu was one of the last ad-supported streaming platforms that was nearing a sale to a major media company.