Meantime, here are some media stories of note for Friday, November 1, 2013:
The phone-hacking trial in England is in the phase of prosecutorial assertion, so in the absence of testimony, the public is hearing the extent of the case that will be waged against top editors Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson, whom court heard yesterday were in a relationship for several years and thus were likely to have known what each other knew about the phone-hacking activities. In today's hearing, court was told that Coulson was told by a reporter he could face criminal charges if they were caught paying police for the royal phone book. Yesterday court heard that private investigator Glenn Mulcaire earned 400,000 pounds in his work to secure information for News of the World.
Governments are often not above putting their media on a short leash, and in Kenya that appears to be an imminent threat. A bill passed today in its Parliament, but which still must receive presidential approval, creates a new oversight committee that can impose fines (up to about $234,000) for violating a restrictive code of conduct and bar some journalists from working. Journalists are calling the measures draconian and an attack on free expression.
USA Today is touting significant circulation growth arising from the latest Alliance for Audited Media data. While it is clear that its audience level is high, what isn't so clear is how that compares to earlier times. That's because certain data on tablet and smartphone audiences were being tabulated but not counted toward the total, until now. Poynter's Sam Kirkland interviews USA Today publisher Larry Kramer on this, while the typically illuminating Alan Mutter examines the throttling of newspaper metrics and the decision by the Alliance to stop reporting one key data point: the revenue streams for the industry. Mutter also notes that, in some cases, newspapers are reporting those who view the content on several platforms as different readers and not as one reader across different platforms.