New York CNN Business  — 

A version of this article first appeared in the “Reliable Sources” newsletter. You can sign up for free right here.

Introducing The One Free Press Coalition

The AP, the FT, Forbes, HuffPost, Reuters, and other news outlets are coming together to form the One Free Press Coalition.

This new group will be announced on Friday. It will share a monthly “10 Most Urgent” list of journalists under attack all around the world. The idea is to highlight cases of journalists “who are incarcerated, under threat or facing injustice,” the coalition says. Here is the current list, which is not ranked in any specific order:

– Maria Ressa, founder of Rappler, The Philippines

– The late Jamal Khashoggi, Washington Post columnist, Saudi Arabia

– Eman Al Nafjan, prominent women’s rights blogger, Saudi Arabia

– Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, Reuters, Myanmar

– Claudia Duque, a veteran investigative reporter, Colombia

– Mohamed Cheikh Ould Mohamed, prominent blogger, Mauritania

– Anna Nimiriano, editor of Juba Monitor, South Sudan

– Pelin Unker, Cumhuriyet, Turkey

– Thomas Awah Junior, correspondent for Afrik 2 Radio and publisher of Aghem Messenger, Cameroon

– Tran Thi Nga, prominent human rights blogger, Vietnam

CPJ and IWMF will help identify which journalists belong on the list. It will be updated on the first day of each month and shared by each of the participating news outlets. Other members include Time mag, Yahoo News, Belgium’s De Standaard, Brussels-based EURACTIV, Le Temps in Switzerland, Süddesutsche Zeitung in Germany. News outlets can become members by emailing the coalition here.

How this coalition formed

Forbes chief content officer Randall Lane brought up this concept when the International Media Council met in Davos earlier this year. “Together, our reach online and on social will signal solidarity for our colleagues and simultaneously tell those who threaten free speech that we are watching,” Lane said in a statement…

WaPo Opinion’s new longform effort

The Washington Post’s Opinions section is launching what it calls a “new longform storytelling initiative” on Friday. “The Opinions Essay” will create a regular space on the web and in print for magazine cover-type pieces.

The first essay is by historian Robert Kagan… It just went up on the WaPo website… And it will appear in a four-page section in Sunday’s print edition. Title: “The strongmen strike back.” His message: Authoritarianism “has reemerged as the greatest threat to the liberal democratic world — a profound ideological, as well as strategic, challenge. And we have no idea how to confront it.”

Trump: “It would be very bad, very bad…”

Arguably the most newsworthy part of Breitbart’s interview with POTUS was his hint about violence. He claimed “the left plays a tougher game” — but HIS supporters are actually tougher, and if they acted out, “it would be very bad, very bad.”

Here’s CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Thursday night: “Imagine for a moment if I said something like this. ‘You know, Trump supporters, they play rough. Threaten my life. Bother me at home. Scare my kids. But you know, I have the support of my local police and the military. And some biker friends. I have the tough people, but they don’t play it tough until they go to a certain point. And then it would be very bad, very bad.’ What do you think happens if I were to say that for real? At a minimum, the Trump trio at Fox would go nuts, and rightly so for a change. My boss would insist I apologize if he even let me stay on. I may be seen as way too unstable to even do this job. Well, what I just said is exactly what this president said today! And he actually DOES have control of the military…”

→ Joe Lockhart’s reaction: Trump is “threatening violence against his political opponents” and yet “I bet we don’t find it on the front page of any newspaper…”

→ But here’s the thing: The threat was veiled enough that Trump’s defenders can easily dismiss it…

Conway’s dodge

Kellyanne Conway dodged Cuomo’s Q’s about the veiled threat. Later, Cuomo said to Don Lemon, “I’ve never seen Kellyanne less effective in defense of the president than she was tonight.”

Lemon re-upped his POV that Conway shouldn’t be booked on CNN. “For me, it feels beneath the dignity of this network to have someone on who just constantly lies and misconstrues things,” he said.

A five-minute-long discussion ensued – a miniature editorial meeting! Cuomo’s rationale for booking Conway: “This is who the president wants out there. I want people to see what he considers his best defense.” I posted video of the conversation here…


– Stephen Colbert’s open on Thursday night: “Thank you for joining us on day 28 of Donald Trump’s national emergency…” (Twitter)

– The CBS and PBS nightly newscasts led with the 12 GOP senators “defying Trump” by rebuking his national emergency declaration. NBC led with “air disasters connected?” and ABC led with the “bomb cyclone…”

– Per CNN’s Jim Acosta, “aides are hashing out a plan for President Trump to use his veto pen in front of cameras as soon as Friday…” (CNN)

Chris and Chris leaving Facebook

The’s lead story right now is “Facebook Executives’ Exits Jolt Company Amid Strategy Shift.”

The top takeaway from Jeff Horwitz and Georgia Wells: Chris Cox, who was “viewed as a potential successor to Mark Zuckerberg,” stepped down while signaling “that he disagrees with the CEO’s new focus on private messaging.”

The other departing exec, WhatsApp chief Chris Daniels, “handed in his resignation months ago,” but FB didn’t announce it until Thursday, per the NYT’s Mike Isaac.

>> “The steady drip of executive departures come amid a bruising two year period” for FB, CNN’s Seth Fiegerman wrote here…

“The Apology Machine”

Sarah Frier’s must-read for Bloomberg Businessweek is about “how Facebook makes its hardest content decisions, what they do when things become a crisis, and why critics are still concerned.” (She summed it up here.)

This week’s “Reliable” pod is all about… podcasts!

I wanted to chart the growth of podcasting, so I booked Nick Quah, the founder of Hot Pod and a critic for Vulture. Are podcasts the new blogs? Has the pod industry “peaked?” What is Spotify’s strategy? We talked about all of that and more. Quah said “the thing to watch over the next 4 or 5 years is… How does money change the fundamental nature of this medium?” Listen to our chat via Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, or your favorite podcast purveyor…


– Very important story by Craig Silverman and Jane Lytvynenko: “Reddit has become a battleground of alleged Chinese trolls…” (BuzzFeed)

– Brad Stone, author of “The Everything Store,” is writing a second book about Amazon. Title: “Amazon Unbound.” Release date: Fall of 2021… (Axios)

Read more of Thursday’s “Reliable Sources” newsletter… And subscribe here to receive future editions in your inbox…

– Layoffs were announced at The Intercept earlier this week… (Beast)

Hallmark Channel severs ties with Lori Loughlin

“Three companies have distanced themselves from actress Lori Loughlin and her daughter over an alleged college admissions scam,” Lisa Respers France wrote Thursday. Among them: The Hallmark Channel. “We are no longer working with Lori Loughlin and have stopped development of all productions” involving her, the network’s parent company said. Jezebel notes that this is a BIG loss for the channel…

– More from Lisa: Loughlin’s school cheating “Full House” episode has resurfaced…

The first book deal…

Fast Company’s Nicole LaPorte had already been working on a book idea about the rich and powerful in L.A. when the admissions scandal broke this week. So she called her agent, they produced a proposal, and Twelve Books bought it on Thursday morning. Incredibly fast turnaround time!

The publishing house says the book will be titled “Guilty Admissions,” covering “how a fake non-profit acted as a guaranteed side-door for under-qualified children of wealthy parents to guarantee admissions into top colleges” and zooming out to examine how the college admissions system is broken…

This year’s Ellie winners are…

CNN’s John Avlon hosted the 2019 National Magazine Awards for Print and Digital Media in Brooklyn on Thursday evening. Via ASME: “The New Yorker won four Ellies, in the Reporting, Feature Writing, Columns and Commentary and Public Interest categories. The New York Times Magazine and Topicwere the only other publications to receive more than one Ellie, both winning two.”

Four publications received general excellence Ellies: National Geographic, the NYT’s Style mag T, the children’s mag Kazoo, and the Virginia Quarterly Review.

Adam Moss received the Magazine Editors’ Hall of Fame Award… The ASME NEXT Awards for Journalists Under 30 were presented to Bon Appétit’s Alex Lau, New York’s Olivia Nuzzi, Philadelphia’s Ernest Owens, The Atlantic’s Jeremy Raff and ESPN The Magazine’s Elaine Teng…

Here is David Remnick’s congratulatory email to New Yorker staffers…