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Photo illustration of Cesar Conde
Cesar Conde will become the chairman of NBC News Group — including MSNBC, CNBC and NBC News — NBCUniversal announced Monday.
Why it matters: His promotion marks the first time that a Latino has become the head of news for NBC, and people who have worked closely with Conde say he's one of America's most underestimated media executives.
Details: Conde led Telemundo's historic turnaround over the past few years, and before that helped make Univision a global Spanish-language news powerhouse.
Conde, 46, has a father from Peru and a mother from Cuba. He grew up in Miami, and became a high school tennis champion before going to Harvard, and then eventually Wharton School of Business. Along the way, he served as a White House Fellow for Secretary of State Colin Powell from 2002–2003.
At Univision, he led the network's primetime newscasts to be competitive with some of the major English-speaking networks in ratings.
At Telemundo, Conde is credited with having brought Telemundo from being the second-place network to Univision to a break-out network.
The big picture: Conde's appointment comes amid a broader executive shuffle at NBC. On Monday the company announced that longtime NBC News chairman Andy Lack is stepping down and will transition out of the company by the end of May.
Disclosure: NBC is an investor in Axios.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Governments in Western democracies are being pressured by the news industry to come up with relief plans to support local media companies that are being upended by the pandemic.
Why it matters: Most experts agree these efforts are not sustainable in supporting the local media ecosystem long-term.
Be smart: While these measures could pose some risk to the editorial independence of local outlets, experts say local media is left with few options at this point to really consider denying the aid.
The bottom line: "These types of policies make a lot of sense. Where there is market failure in a sector that has an important civic function, then it's always appropriate for the government to step in to help maintain those public services," says Rodney Benson, chair of NYU's Department of Media, Culture, and Communication.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
The major ad-based internet companies reported mostly positive earnings during the first quarter impacted by the pandemic.
Driving the news: Facebook, Google, Snapchat, Twitter and Amazon all beat revenue expectations for the first quarter of 2020, despite the fact that most saw dramatic advertising growth slowdowns starting in late March, and some saw overall profits take a hit.
The media industry, which is also heavily reliant on digital advertising revenues, is experiencing major setbacks.
Yes, but: Most companies expect to face even bigger advertising headwinds over the next quarter, as the stay-at-home orders will have covered most of April, May and June in some states.
The bottom line: The pandemic has proven their resiliency of big tech companies, and will likely position them to come out stronger on the other end of the crisis.
The absence of live sports is reigniting the years-long debate over the real value of live sports in a Pay-TV package.
Driving the news: New York State Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat known for taking on big companies in favor of consumers, joined a growing group of critics last week that are calling on cable and satellite TV providers to rebate Pay-TV fees to consumers.
Why it matters: Her argument is that consumers shouldn't have to pay the same amount for cable and satellite packages, which include expensive sports networks, when those sports networks aren't carrying any live sports.
Yes, but: Contractually, it's unlikely cable and satellite providers will budge.
The big picture: Analysts and reports have begun to call out the tension between the networks and carriers ahead of earnings season.
By the numbers: The average monthly cable or satellite package in the U.S. is roughly $100. Sports accounts for roughly 20% of that package fee.
Photo: Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Feared activist investors Elliott Management are financing a patent lawsuit on behalf of a small interactive video company against the splashy new mobile streaming company Quibi, a person familiar with the lawsuit tells Axios' Dan Primack and me.
Why it matters: Elliott Management's involvement escalates the months-long battle over who owns the video technology that powers Quibi's entire business. Quibi just launched in April, and has struggled to stick to its ambitious growth plan amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Details: The lawsuit alleges that Quibi's flagship tech, which allows users to seamlessly switch mobile displays between horizontal and vertical, is stolen from video company Eko.
Terms of the arrangement are unknown, but a source says that Elliott will receive a "significant" equity stake in Eko.
What's next: Eko has requested an immediate injunction against Quibi, with a ruling possible this week. But that's only on the trade-secret piece, not the patents, with a broader case management conference scheduled for July. Overall, the entire case could take upwards of three years.
ATTN:, the progressive social media-based news outlet aimed at millennials, is launching a video series on Facebook and Instagram, in partnership with Poynter's groundbreaking digital literacy project "MediaWise."
How it works: Facebook came to ATTN: to produce the series because it's already proven that it knows how to capture millennials' attention with video, especially on Instagram.
What's next: The first video in the series premieres today, and is focused on helping young people distinguish fact vs. fiction on content specifically relating to the coronavirus.
Mickey Mouse rides in a parade at Disney World's Magic Kingdom in Orlando, Florida. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images
Wall Street is anxiously awaiting Disney earnings at market close today, after several analysts have already begun to downgrade the stock due to its unique exposure to the coronavirus epidemic.
Why it matters: Roughly half of Disney's revenue is directly tied to industries that have been shut down, like parks and resorts, advertising and film.
Disney's damage control so far:
Yes, but: The one bright spot for Disney throughout the pandemic has been Disney+, which Disney says has surpassed 50 million subscribers.
What to expect: Moody's SVP Neil Begley says that he expects Disney to take a hit in Q1, but that "the dramatic impact that's coming is really in Q2."
The bottom line: "We're anticipating that this will be a rough couple of quarters for the company."
Of all the conspiracy theories floating around the internet related to the coronavirus, disinfectant has by far gone the most viral.
Why it matters: Unlike some of the other conspiracy theories gaining traction on the internet, the disinfectant theory has gone viral online in large part because it's so obviously nonsensical that it quickly became an internet meme after President Trump suggested it could be used as a cure for coronavirus.
By the numbers: As of Monday, “Disinfectant Cure” retains the most widely-discussed conspiracy, despite discussion around the issue fading rapidly.