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Wednesday, Oct 22nd

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USA Today lays off 60-plus staffers

USA todayUSA Today laid off at least 60 staffers on Wednesday in an effort to cut back on costs, with the majority of layoffs taking place in the editorial department, sources at the newspaper confirmed.

The layoffs, first reported by Poynter, come in the wake of Gannett's recent announcement that it will spin off its print division, which includes USA Today and 81 daily local and regional newspapers.

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Video reportedly shows ISIL beheading journalist Steven Sotloff

Sotloff videoThe terrorist group Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has reportedly released a video showing the murder of journalist Steven Sotloff, the group's second beheading of an American journalist in as many weeks.

The monitoring service SITE Intelligence Group reported Tuesday that ISIL had released a video in which Sotloff is killed in a manner similar to the beheading of James Foley, the photojournalist who was killed last month. The executioner is reportedly the same man who killed Foley and threatened to kill Sotloff in the video released on Aug. 19.

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Peter Theo Curtis, U.S. Journalist Missing Since 2012, Freed By Kidnappers In Syria

peter Theo Curtis releasedKidnappers in Syria have freed a U.S. journalist missing since 2012, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Sunday, following what Qatari-owned Al Jazeera said were efforts by the Gulf Arab state to win his release.

Kerry said in a statement announcing the release of Theo Curtis that the United States was using "every diplomatic, intelligence and military tool" at its disposal to secure the release of other Americans held hostage in Syria.

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US journalist beheaded; another hostage at risk by Islamic State

journalist beheadedIn a horrifying act of revenge for U.S. airstrikes in northern Iraq, militants with the Islamic State extremist group have beheaded American journalist James Foley — and are threatening to kill another hostage, U.S. officials say.

The White House must now weigh the risks of adopting an aggressive policy to destroy the Islamic State against resisting any action that could result in the death of another American.

It will also confront the potentially necessary step of pursuing the Islamic State in Syria, where President Barack Obama has resisted launching airstrikes or deploying significant American firepower.

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James Risen: Obama Is 'Greatest Enemy To Press Freedom In A Generation'

James RisenPulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter James Risen is not mincing words about President Barack Obama.

Risen has been fighting the Obama administration's efforts to get him to testify about his sources for six years. The Department of Justice has ordered him to testify against former CIA agent Jeffrey Sterling, who it believes leaked information about a failed CIA operation in Iran that Risen reported on in his book. Risen recently lost his bid to have the Supreme Court revisit his case.

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AP video journalist and 5 others killed in Gaza

AP journalist and 5 others killed in GazaAn Associated Press video journalist has been killed in an ordnance explosion in the Gaza Strip, together with a Palestinian translator and three members of the Gaza police.

Simone Camilli, 35, died Wednesday when Gaza police engineers were neutralizing unexploded ordnance in the Gaza town of Beit Lahiya left over from fighting between Israel and Islamic militants.

Camilli and a translator working with the AP, Ali Shehda Abu Afash, were accompanying the ordnance team on assignment when the explosion occurred.

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Wikipedia blocks 'disruptive' page edits from US Congress

WikipediaWikipedia administrators have imposed a ban on page edits from computers at the US House of Representatives, following "persistent disruptive editing".

The 10-day block comes after anonymous changes were made to entries on politicians and businesses, as well as events like the Kennedy assassination.

The biography of former US defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld was edited to say that he was an "alien lizard".  One staffer said they were being banned for the "actions of two or three".

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