By Brian Stelter, CNN Senior Media Correspondent
Amazon wants to be the brain inside your big-screen TV.
On Wednesday the company introduced a box called Amazon fireTV that enables television sets to access Internet programming, including streaming shows from its Amazon Prime subscription service.
With the device, Amazon joins competitors like Google, Apple, Microsoft and Roku that want to power consumers' TV-watching, replacing (or - more likely - supplementing) the set top boxes from cable and satellite companies that sit in most living rooms.
The device may help advance Amazon's streaming TV ambitions. The company has started to introduce original shows, like "Alpha House" and "Betas," and has spent handsome sums of money to secure exclusive rights to other shows, like past seasons of Fox's "24." But its streaming service is a fraction of the size of Netflix.
Read more of Brian's article here
Executive Producer Beau Willimon speaks with guest host Eric Deggans about the role of journalists in Netflix's "House of Cards."
By Becky Perlow, CNN
August may be a slow month for news, but Reliable's got a jam-packed show for you on Sunday with guest host Eric Deggans of The Tampa Bay Times. We'll be looking at the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, the media's coverage of race-related issues and the launch of Qatar-based Al Jazeera America. Until then, check out what the Reliable staff is reading now.
Call me Chelsea: Three years have passed since Bradley Manning released hundreds of thousands of military papers. Still to be determined? How Manning's actions will affect the safety of Americans or the secrecy of the government. Manning was sentenced last week, convicted of 20 of 22 counts and sentences to 35 years in prison. In a recent twist, however, Manning released a statement on Thursday requesting news outlets refer to him/her as Chelsea Manning going forward. "I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible," Manning said in a statement read on the Today show. So what should news organizations do?
Netflix can read your mind: With the aid of algorithms that could rival online dating websites, Netflix is now combing its users' video queue with its famous "Based on your viewing history" suggestion service. Users will now see suggestions based on what they've watched in the past, in addition to the star rating system associated with each movie. "The idea is to show users 'titles you’re most likely to want to watch right up front,' Netflix product executive Michael Spiegelman said, in a blog post introducing the change," explained the AllThingsD article. So be careful what you pick, because it just might appear on your Netflix homepage now - and it might be something you're embarrassed to be seen watching.
He said, she said: Mother Jones reportedly published a headline quoting Aaron Sorkin blasting The Huffington Post, which read "Aaron Sorkin in Washington, DC: The Huffington Post Sucks.' Sorkin has come forward and claims he was not only not misquoted, but the quote was entirely fabricated. The author of the article has since responded to the Politico article about the alleged misquote, saying "he wrote the original headline and that Sorkin was definitely expressing his dislike of the Huffington Post."
With 14 Emmy nominations for their original programming, how is Netflix affecting the way we watch television? Guest host Frank Sesno invites Mario Armstrong and Peter Rubin to discuss.
By Becky Perlow, CNN
Frank Sesno, director of George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs, joins Reliable Sources this week as our guest host. As a former CNN Washington bureau chief, he's got an exciting show planned for Sunday - including Al Jazeera landing in America and the media's focus on Anthony Weiner.
When Anthony Weiner left Congress in disgrace following a sexting scandal in 2011, most critics believed his political career was effectively finished. Little did we know that Weiner would return to the political limelight in the form of a New York City mayoral race. Politico's Lois Romano and NY1's Errol Louis join Sesno to discuss what role Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin, plays in the coverage and whether the media are making too big a deal about the new, never-before-seen sexting pictures that were released earlier this week by TheDirty.com.
Next, ITV News Royal Correspondent Tim Ewart, Mediaite's Joe Concha and Time magazine's Europe Editor Catherine Mayer stop by the studio to share their insight into the British royal baby media debacle - was the wall-to-wall coverage justified? And does American really care about a new born baby across the pond?
Al Jazeera America is set to launch next month, and with it comes questions yet unanswered by the Qatar-based media network, including who will drive the editorial content and whether it will truly be an independent news organization? Former Al Jazeera English anchor David Marash joins Sesno to share his thoughts on their expansion into the States.
It's time to end the White House press briefings - at least that's what former White House Assistant Press Secretary Reid Cherlin wants you to believe. In a New Republic article, Cherlin argues that "The daily briefing has become a worthless chore for reporters, an embarrassing nuisance to administration staff, and a source of added friction between the two camps." Cherlin joins Sesno to discuss his recent article in the magazine.
Finally, Netflix stock may have dipped but its subscriber base is larger than ever. While some question its ability to produce truly originally programming, 14 Emmy nominations certainly seems to cinch their spot in TV programming history. Wired magazine's Peter Rubin and HLN Digital Lifestyle Expert Mario Armstrong will discuss the Emmy nominations, why Netflix is so popular and where they see the video streaming site's business model moving in the future.
Tune in this Sunday at 11am ET.
Sarah Lacy, Mario Armstrong and Howard Kurtz discuss the results of a survey that found that a majority of Facebook users have taken extended breaks from the social media site.
By Becky Perlow, CNN
With Dick Morris recently released from his punditry duties on Fox News, many critics have questioned whether the network, long criticized for acting as an extension of the GOP, is trying to soften its conservative image. Conservatives aren't the only ones in trouble, though, as Democratic Senator Bob Menendez continues his battle with the media. On Monday, Menendez told CNN's Chief Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash that the news website The Daily Caller was "a right wing blog" that was smearing his reputation with "totally unsubstantiated" lies. Until recently, the mainstream media had largely stayed away from the sex scandal claims, but as journalists dug deeper, they discovered the Garden State senator might be mixed up with other conduct claims that are questionable in nature. Lauren Ashburn, Editor-in-chief of Daily-download.com, The New Yorker's Washington Correspondent Ryan Lizza and George Washington University's Professor of Media and Public Affairs Steve Roberts join Howie at the table to debate. They'll also discuss the media's mockery of Chris Christie's health and the unusual media connection to the manhunt for Los Angeles ex-police officer Christopher J. Dorner.
Founder of PandoDaily.com Sarah Lacy and HLN Digital Lifestyle Expert Mario Armstrong will continue our media analysis this week, focusing on Facebook vacations (when people leave Facebook cold-turkey for a significant amount of time) and Netflix's attempt to change the way viewers watch TV.
Rounding up our show, Culture Commentator Lola Ogunnaike and NY Magazine's "The Cut" Features Editor Maureen O'Connor will lead the Grammy discussion... namely, what does CBS's new "dress code memo" mean for the famed red carpet?
Tune in this Sunday at 11am EST.
By Becky Perlow, CNN
Reliable Sources digs into media coverage this week – but here’s a look at some of the other stories that caught our attention:
Answering on Al Jazeera: Falling victim to The Daily Show's comedic wrath is a rite of passage for most politicians and Al Gore was no exception. Reported by Mediaite, Jon Stewart questioned Gore about the climate control activist's decision to sell Current TV to Al Jazeera, a news operation owned by the Middle Eastern country Qatar, which makes its money on oil and gas. Stewart called it an "odd move" because Gore preaches about climate change, and according to him, what's a major cause of climate change? Oh, that's right: oil and gas.
Netflix and Networks: Netflix, well-known for its DVD delivery service, is aiming to make itself equally renowned for its online streaming and change the way viewers watch TV. It hopes to accomplish this in 2013 with new original programming that's only available via Netflix, with no other major network involvement. Debuting tonight will be one of these new series called "House of Cards," a political thriller starring Kevin Spacey as (what else?) a sociopath. Here's the kicker: instead of releasing one-episode per week like its network competitors, Netflix is debuting all 13 episodes in one sitting. (Now would be a good time to cancel your Friday plans and figure out what you want for dinner because you'll be ordering in tonight.)
Twitter's gone rogue: The Week's Matt Lewis says he's no Manti Te'o, but he "did meet a lot of virtual friends" via Twitter. The Conservative writer has been tweeting since 2008, long before Twitter became another outlet for news. Four years later, though, Lewis says "The social sharing tool [that] was once a vision [is now] a prison."
Bloggers vs. Reporters: According to BuzzFeed, you shouldn't confuse the two, or you might just end up on Rajiv Chandrasekaran's bad side. Note: You would be joining the company of Senator Jim Inhofe, who quoted conservative Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin during Chuck Hagel's confirmation hearing earlier today. Except he called her a reporter, and Chandrasekaran apparently took great offense.