Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #250 Update on German Corporate Control Over American Media

Lis­ten:
MP3 One Seg­ment

1. This mate­r­i­al should be eval­u­at­ed against the back­ground of the oth­er broad­casts in this series.

2. The pro­gram begins with dis­cus­sion of the Ber­tels­mann firm. The firm report­ed a 45% increase in annu­al prof­its after con­sol­i­dat­ing its broad­cast prop­er­ties. (San Jose Mer­cury News; 9/14/2000; p. 8C.)

3. The increased rev­enue improves its posi­tion with regard to planned acqui­si­tions and expan­sion. (The Wall Street Jour­nal; 9/14/2000; p.A22.)

4. Ber­tels­mann plans to expand its online busi­ness, in par­tic­u­lar. (Idem.) Specif­i­cal­ly, Ber­tels­mann CEO Thomas Mid­del­hoff intends for the com­pa­ny to become num­ber one in Inter­net retail­ing of books, CD’s and DVDs. (Finan­cial Times; 9/14/2000; p. 19.)

5. The pro­gram high­lights the EU’s nega­tion of Time/Warner’s pur­chase of EMI. (Ibid., p.1.)

6. There has been spec­u­la­tion that Ber­tels­mann might step in to acquire EMI. (Idem.) If, in fact, Ber­tels­mann does acquire EMI, the EU’s inter­dic­tion of Time/Warner’s pur­chase of the Eng­lish firm would loom larg­er in that con­text.

7. Look­ing to prof­it in the field of on-line syn­di­ca­tion, Ber­tels­mann pur­chased a stake in iSyn­di­cate. (The Wall Street Jour­nal; 9/25/2000; p. A30.)

8. In still anoth­er advance in the high-tech field, Ber­tels­mann announced the cre­ation of a fund (e‑Bertelsmann) to finance high-tech com­pa­nies in the media field. (The New York Times; 9/21/2000; p. C10.)

9. Past broad­casts in this series have under­scored the explic­it rival­ry between Ber­tels­man­n’s e‑business and Amazon.com. Ber­tels­mann stole a march on Ama­zon when barnesandnoble.com (50% owned by Ber­tels­mann) replaced Ama­zon as the book ven­dor of choice on Yahoo, the world’s most pop­u­lar web por­tal. (The San Fran­cis­co Exam­in­er; 9/19/2000; p. D‑3.)

10. Ber­tels­man­n’s “e‑portfolio” increased when barnesandnoble.com pur­chased Fat­brain, an on-line book­seller spe­cial­iz­ing in tech­ni­cal titles. (The Wall Street Jour­nal; 9/14/2000; p. B18.)

11. Ber­tels­man­n’s book pub­lish­ing busi­ness advanced when Ran­dom House (a Ber­tels­mann prop­er­ty and the largest Eng­lish-lan­guage trade pub­lish­er in the world) estab­lished a dig­i­tal pub­lish­ing unit. (The New York Times; 7/31/2000; p. C1.)

12. BMG (Ber­tels­man­n’s music divi­sion) announced that for­mer Arista Records chief Clive Davis signed with the com­pa­ny to direct a sub­sidiary label. (The Los Ange­les Times; 8/15/2000; p. C10.)

(Record­ed on 9/27/2000.)

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