April 11, 2016 Last Updated 1:20 pm

Daily Mail reportedly interested in Yahoo, seeks private equity partner to add to future pain

Morning Brief: The Boston Globe gets plenty of attention from Trump supporters for publishing fake front page imagining a future with Donald Trump as the new President

Call it future schadenfreude, the feeling one gets when someone is about to do something unfortunate, and the pleasure one gets watching them doing it. What are we talking about? Well, buying Yahoo, of course.

Old media companies, who are basically admitting that they have no clue how to drive digital audiences themselves, are buying up digital properties, making their publishers rich so they can go off and do it again while the old media companies try to absorb the acquired properties and make something out of them. You see it going on at most of the major magazine companies who are all but admitting that they have no clue who to attract millennial women so must buy up newly launched web properties, none of which are driving much revenue (if they were they wouldn’t be selling out to some old print company),

60The latest rumors have the Daily Mail in talks with private equity companies about a possible acquisition of Yahoo. It’s perfect. Buy up something that has been failing for years, and go into the deal with a private equity company to do it – what could a better recipe for complete disaster.

“Given the success of dailymail.com and Elite Daily, we have been in discussions with a number of parties who are potential bidders [for Yahoo],” a spokesman for the publisher told the Guardian. “Discussions are at a very early stage and there is no certainty that any transaction will take place.”

The only question is which traditional print company will want to fight with the Daily Mail and General Trust over Yahoo, driving up the price in the process, making sure that who ever ends up with the property eventually looks as bright as when Rupert Murdoch bought Myspace for $580 million in July 2005 (and then sold it for $35 million). Myspace is now owned, of course, by Time Inc.

There will, of course, always be a buyer. Anyone with experience with M&A knows that what drives many deals is the momentum that develops once an executive sees the black book and then starts dreaming of announcing a deal. They will look like big wheeler dealers so must make the deal happen, hardly deterred once the dollars and cents people come back with the projects – forecasts can always be tweaked to look better, after all.

I once worked for an owner who insisted that the CFO NOT create a budget for a prospective acquisition so as to not accidentally put the brakes on the deal. That didn’t surprise me, the CEO was way out of their league when it came to publishing, but it was shocking to find a CFO that would go along.

The Boston Globe Sunday published a false front page in support of an editorial denouncing the presidential campaign of Donald Trump.

The fake front page covers the Ideas section of the paper and is dated Sunday, April 9, 2017 with the blaring headline “Deportations To Begin” with the secondary headline “Markets sink as trade war loom.”

Ideas-Trump-front-page-2-400x700Other “stories” on the fake front page include a story on soldiers refusing to kill ISIS families, as well as one on a new libel label law – both things that Trump has advocated on the campaign trail.

The actual editorial warns of the prospects of a Donald Trump presidency.

“Donald J. Trump’s vision for the future of our nation is as deeply disturbing as it is profoundly un-American,” the editorial begins.

The editorial then gives readers an explanation for the fake front page, “to envision what America looks like with Trump in the White House.”

The editorial then continues by listing what the editorial board finds troubling with Trump:

“He winks and nods at political violence at his rallies. He says he wants to “open up” libel laws to punish critics in the news media and calls them “scum.” He promised to shut out an entire class of immigrants and visitors to the United States on the sole basis of their religion.”

Trump supporters have gone on the Globe’s website to complain, though not in massive numbers. As of this morning there are less than 300 comments on the editorial, though that may be a function of comment moderation – who knows how many comments remain in queue.

If Trump had hoped that the Globe’s rival, the more conservative Boston Herald might come to his rescue, we would be disappointed. It, too, ran an editorial critical of Trump, the Herald’s beef being Trump’s pledge to stop money transfers from the US to Mexico should Mexico refuse to pay for the construction of the Trump wall.

“For once President Obama’s rap on Donald Trump was too mild. Obama said Trump’s plan to block money transfers from the United States to Mexico to force Mexico to pay for a wall along the border was ihalf-baked’,” the Herald editorial begins

“Sorry, Mr. President, but the plan is totally lunatic. Not to mention cruel, unfair and unworkable.”

As for Donald Trump’s reaction to the editorial… well, nothing so far. Instead. Trump has other problems, such as winning primaries and walking away with fewer delegates that his rival, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

Among the media app updates released over the weekend is an update for the digital newsstand app Magzter. The app description mentions improved article reading and performance improvements.

The music streaming service Pandora also issued an update to fix bug that was causing crashes.

Comments are closed.