For the record: 24/08/09

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The Independent Online

"The performance in a difficult free evening newspaper sector has fallen short of expectations." James Murdoch of NewsCorp buries thelondonpaper

Cowell's wily move

When Simon Cowell, pictured, returned to the screens on Saturday for the sixth British series of The X Factor, attentive viewers may have detected a smile playing around the lips of Mr Nasty. That could be because Cowell is expected to announce next month that he has finally persuaded Fox to take the show Stateside in 2012. As the network that broadcasts the behemoth that is American Idol, Fox might be a little nervous of confusing US viewers with a second Cowell talent show vehicle. But the Murdoch-owned channel's bigger fear was losing a slice of brand Cowell to a rival network, such as NBC, which has also been linked to The X Factor.

Back on track

To some it's a brand associated with the Eighties and the growth of the pop video, but MTV will try to recapture its reputation for knowing where the kids are at with the launch of a website that looks to be a favourite with media futurists. MTV Sticky will be freely accessible and is compiled by a team of "youth culture insight analysts". It contains revelations such as the youthful demand for jeans with inside "condom pockets," the fashion for fixed-gear bicycles, the Russian emo rock scene and a trend for animated record sleeves. There's also a feature on the latest streetwear from west London.

Edwards 1, ITV nil

I don't expect to see Huw Edwards of White City, below, in that particular spread, but the Welsh newsreader must be heartened by figures which show the BBC's Ten O'Clock News hitting an audience of 5.5 million last Wednesday, against the rival ITV bulletin's 1.2 million, the biggest gap between the two ever. Interest in the Afghan conflict seems to be the driver. The figures come after a mini revival by ITV earlier this year but the bulletin was royally stuffed by ITV1's bizarre scheduling, ahead of the news, of a football match between Panathinaikos of Athens and Atletico Madrid. Even a sports fan like Mark Austin would have struggled to get worked up by that.