In your arousing Monday media column: Hugh Hefner wants to take Playboy private, new media editors at the NYT, Bill Hemmer's lies don't fool anyone, and screwed freelancers will not be screwed forever.
- Hugh Hefner has submitted a $185 million offer to take the flailing Playboy empire private. Assuming he can afford it easily, it's not a bad idea; it would, at least, save him the public headaches of hearing the complaints of media and shareholders as his company fades into its inevitable twilight. Also, chicks.
- More staff shuffling at the NYT, where you can't move up, but you're welcome to move sideways: Mary Jo Murphy (formerly: Metro, National, IHT, Week in Review) and Craig Hunter (formerly: science) are the new deputy editors on the media desk. Read the full memo at FishbowlNY.
- Fox News robot Bill Hemmer tells Howie Kurtz, "I deal in facts. I deal in evidence. And opinion, frankly, is not my comfort zone." But Howie points out that Hemmer almost always has a conservative as his first guest. Let us now praise Howie Kurtz for a good story! It happens! Real recognize real! The point is, Fox News is a stain that doesn't wash off.
- For more than a week now, freelancers for art-focused publisher Louise Blouin Media have been flooding inboxes around town with complaints of being stiffed on payments by the company; today, Keith Kelly gets the following explanation from president Ben Hartley:
"Like many companies, we have been adjusting our payment cycles to more closely align with the timing of our actual revenues," Hartley said. "The past six months have been a time of unprecedented growth for Louise Blouin Media. Despite the difficult environment, Art + Auction magazine has recorded significant year-on-year increases in advertising revenue."
...which would lead you to think that they would be paying their freelancers then, right? But they're not. What a shitty, shitty explanation.