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The search for the next generation of newsroom leaders.

The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Reuters, HuffPost and Wired are all looking for new editors. Soon, The New York Times will be too.

Why it matters: The new hires will reflect a new generation — one that's addicted to technology, demands accountability and expects diversity to be a priority.


Driving the news: The Washington Post’s widely-respected Executive Editor Marty Baron announced Tuesday he would be retiring at the end of the month, following a monumental nine-year run at the Post, and 45 years in journalism.

  • Sources tell Axios that The Post has eyed both internal and external candidates, including Steven Ginsberg (the Post's national editor during the Trump administration), former Post managing editor Kevin Merida (now at ESPN) and National Geographic Editor in Chief Susan Goldberg (who helped lead that newsroom's successful digital transformation).
  • Since it's owned by Jeff Bezos, the Post will serve as a litmus test for how much traditional newsrooms might think outside of the box for these types of roles.

Be smart: This trend extends beyond print. TV newsrooms are also facing a reckoning.

  • NBC News just tapped Telemundo veteran Cesar Conde to lead MSNBC, CNBC and NBC News. MSNBC vet Rashida Jones will be the first woman of color to lead a major cable news company when she becomes president of MSNBC in February. Susan Zirinsky became the first female president of CBS News in 2019. Suzanne Scott was named Fox News' first female CEO in 2018.
  • What to watch: The next big TV newsroom shakeup is expected at CNN, where the network's boss Jeff Zucker is reportedly eyeing an exit.

The big picture: Trust in traditional media is at an all-time low in America. At the same time, the news business — including big institutions — are struggling to survive the pandemic.

  • The new editors chosen to lead these newsrooms must be willing to approach journalism in a new way. Candidates that would've been considered overly qualified years ago might no longer be equipped to lead a modern newsroom.
  • Candidates, particularly women and minorities, as well as technologists, that were for years overlooked for these types of roles, may now be more appealing.

Bottom line: Change is coming to America's biggest newsrooms.

Go deeper: Women leading press during the Biden era

Scammers seize on COVID confusion

Data: FTC; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

Scamming has skyrocketed in the past year, and much of the increase is attributed to COVID-related scams, more recently around vaccines.

Why it matters: The pandemic has created a prime opportunity for scammers to target people who are already confused about the chaotic rollouts of things like stimulus payments, loans, contact tracing and vaccines. Data shows that older people who aren't digitally literate are the most vulnerable.

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Biden explains justification for Syria strike in letter to congressional leadership

President Biden told congressional leadership in a letter Saturday that this week's airstrike against facilities tied to Iranian-backed militia groups in Syria was consistent with the U.S. right to self-defense.

Why it matters: Some Democrats, including Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), have criticized the Biden administration for the strike and demanded a briefing.

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FDA authorizes Johnson & Johnson's one-shot COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

The Food and Drugs Administration on Saturdayissued an emergency use authorization for Johnson & Johnson's one-shot coronavirus vaccine.

Why it matters: The authorization of a third coronavirus vaccine in the U.S. will help speed up the vaccine rollout across the country, especially since the J&J shot only requires one dose as opposed to Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech's two-shot vaccines.

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Italy tightens COVID restrictions for 5 regions amid warnings of a growing prevalence of variants

Italy on Saturday announced it was tightening restrictions in five of the country's 20 regions in an effort curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Driving the news: The announcement comes as health experts and scientists warn of the more transmissible coronavirus variants, per Reuters.

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Palestinian Authority announces new COVID restrictions as cases surge

The Palestinian Authority on Saturday announced fresh coronavirus restrictions, including a partial lockdown, for the occupied West Bank as COVID-19 cases surge.

The big picture: The new measures come as Israel, which leads the world in vaccinations, faces increased pressure to ensure Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip have equal access to vaccines.

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Myanmar military fires UN ambassador after anti-coup speech

Myanmar's military regime on Saturday fired the country's Ambassador to the United Nations, Kyaw Moe Tun, a day after he gave a pro-democracy speech asking UN member nations to publicly condemn the Feb. 1 coup, The New York Times reports.

Details: State television said the ambassador had "betrayed the country and spoken for an unofficial organization which doesn’t represent the country and had abused the power and responsibilities of an ambassador."

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