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Twitter CEO Linda Yaccarino Hindered By Non-Compete Agreement

She has been restricted from pursuing advertising deals that could conflict with NBCUniversal’s interests, at least during the initial phase of her tenure.

Maddy Troy

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Just over three weeks into her new role as Twitter CEO, Linda Yaccarino has encountered limitations in fulfilling her responsibilities related to advertising due to a contractual agreement with her former employer, NBCUniversal.

Yaccarino, known for her role as head of advertising at NBCUniversal, was brought on by Elon Musk with the expectation of focusing on business operations and boosting advertising for Twitter. However, her ability to engage in public negotiations and advertising discussions has been hindered.

According to The New York Times, Yaccarino has had conversations with Twitter’s advertisers about objectionable content on the platform. Nonetheless, she has been restricted from pursuing advertising deals that could conflict with NBCUniversal’s interests, at least during the initial phase of her tenure, as indicated by three sources familiar with the arrangement.

Despite the advertising limitations, Yaccarino has been involved in repairing the relationship between Twitter and Google, engaging with regulators, and focusing on employee morale. She has organized happy hours, sought to rally employees with mission statements, and increased internal communication.

In her first companywide email, obtained by The New York Times, she emphasized Twitter’s mission to become the world’s most accurate real-time information source and a global town square for communication.

Musk did not make a companywide announcement regarding Yaccarino’s appointment at Twitter. During an internal ad sales meeting on June 12, Yaccarino expressed optimism about Twitter’s advertising prospects, acknowledging the challenges posed by misinformation and toxic content on the platform. She highlighted the need to regain the trust of major brands and engage in “hand-to-hand combat” to persuade them to return.

Yaccarino also conveyed her intention to establish positive relationships with the media, contrasting Musk’s tumultuous interactions. While recognizing Musk as “the boss,” she aimed to cultivate favorable relationships with the media to amplify Twitter’s strategies.

Although Twitter did not make Yaccarino available for an interview, a person close to her mentioned that the noncompete clause likely applied only during her initial weeks at Twitter, while another source suggested that enforcing the clause was challenging for NBCUniversal. The specific expiration date of the clause remains unclear. Elon Musk did not respond to a request for comment.

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Media Business

iHeartMedia Adds David Pigue and Sophia Gonzalez to Government Affairs Staff

Pigue had previously worked for Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) on various policy issues. Gonzalez comes to the company after serving as the Assistant to the Chief of Staff for Sen. Jon Ossoff (D-GA).

Barrett News Media

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A photo of the iHeartMedia logo

iHeartMedia has added David Pigue as Senior Director of Policy Counsel and Sophia Gonzalez has been named Sophia Gonzalez as Manager of Government Affairs.

Pigue had previously worked for Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) on various policy issues. Meanwhile, Gonzalez comes to the company after serving as the Assistant to the Chief of Staff for Sen. Jon Ossoff (D-GA).

Additionally, the Washington D.C.-based division promoted Jessica Marventano (Executive Vice President) and Sara Morris (Vice President of Government Affairs) at the company, as well.

“David and Sophia together bring a wealth of experience in areas of key importance to iHeartMedia that will be of tremendous value to iHeart’s work in Washington on behalf of our more than 860 local radio stations as well as the company’s industry-leading digital and podcasting platforms,” Marventano said, according to Inside Radio.

“Our company is deeply appreciative of iHeartMedia’s Government Affairs team and their hard work on behalf of our company as well as on issues of critical importance to the broadcast radio industry,” added Chairman/CEO Bob Pittman. “I congratulate Jessica and Sara on their promotions, and welcome David and Sophia to the iHeart team.”

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Media Business

Warner Bros. Discovery Sees 14% Drop in Ad Revenue in Q4

“This business is not without its challenges.”

Barrett News Media

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A photo of the Warner Bros. Discovery logo

Warner Bros. Discovery hosted its fourth-quarter earnings call Friday, and while the company reported hundreds of millions in losses, it was trying to view that as a positive.

The company reported a loss of $400 million, which is down sharply from the loss of $2.1 billion it experienced in the same time frame in 2022.

Additionally, Warner Bros. Discovery — the parent company of CNN — saw a 14% decline in advertising revenue during the final three months of 2023.

“This business is not without its challenges,” Chief Executive Officer David Zaslav said during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, according to CNBC. “Among them, we continue to face the impacts of ongoing disruption in the pay TV ecosystem and a dislocated, linear advertising ecosystem. We are challenging our leaders to find innovative solutions.”

The comapny did report an 86% increase in free cash flow, which now sits at $6.16 billion.

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Media Business

Jeremy Boreing: Every Outlet ‘Suffering From Facebook’s Massive Shift Away From News’

“Mark Zuckerberg remade the news landscape when he moved his company into the space, and then gutted it when he moved out.”

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A photo of Jeremy Boreing
(Photo: The Daily Wire)

In recent years, Facebook has shifted its focus away from a news and link-sharing platform to become more focused on social interactions between users. That shift has been detrimental to news publishers, according to The Daily Wire co-founder Jeremy Boreing.

In a statement to Mediaite, the digital media executive wasn’t shy about his stance that the shift from Facebook has been detrimental not only to his organization but to the industry as a whole.

“Everyone is suffering from Facebook’s massive shift away from news. Mark Zuckerberg remade the news landscape when he moved his company into the space, and then gutted it when he moved out,” Boreing said. “A capricious trillion dollar company can crush entire industries without much effort. Daily Wire is disproportionately impacted because we were built with a focus on Facebook. Now, our focus has shifted to more premium content.”

The comments from Jeremy Boreing coincide with a report that conservative digital outlets have seen a dramatic drop in viewership, especially compared to figures seen in 2020. One outlet — Breitbart — has seen a drop in traffic of 87% compared to the tumultuous 2020 year that included the start and heights of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a contentious presidential election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

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