The 5 stories PR pros need to know on Wednesday morning, 5.25.2016

Peter Thiel backs lawsuit against Gawker; Violence at Trump event in New Mexico; Microsoft calls it quits on Nokia consumer smartphone push; Libre Initiative changes course amid Trump candidacy; Vice cuts jobs on two continents.

Peter Thiel (Image via Wikimedia Commons, By David Orban from Italy - Peter Thiel, CC BY 2.0)
Peter Thiel (Image via Wikimedia Commons, By David Orban from Italy - Peter Thiel, CC BY 2.0)

Silicon Valley billionaire bankrolls lawsuits against Gawker
Facebook booster and PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel has been paying Hulk Hogan’s legal bills for his sex-tape lawsuit against Gawker Media, according to a stunning story posted by Forbes on Monday night. Gawker chief Nick Denton told The New York Times a day earlier he had a hunch a Silicon Valley billionaire was footing the bill for the lawsuit, which could cost Denton’s company $140 million. Gawker outed Thiel in 2007.

Around the campaign trail
Clinton, Trump win Washington State primaries. Violence at Trump event in Albuquerque. Elizabeth Warren goes on the attack against Trump; Trump goes after Bill Clinton’s past. Economy, jobs top issues for California voters ahead of June 7 primaries. Clinton endorses Lemonade.

The end of the Nokia brand
Microsoft is laying off 1,800 staffers and enduring a $950 million hit as it puts the Nokia brand out of its misery, quitting the company’s foray into consumer smartphones. Microsoft acquired Nokia’s devices and services division in April 2014 for $7 billion.

Trump lays waste to Koch initiative targeting Hispanic voters
Donald Trump’s candidacy has blown up most of the work conducted by the Koch brothers’ Libre Initiative, formed to attract Latino voters after so few voted for Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election. The push’s executive director told The Huffington Post it is focusing on Senate races. The HuffPo byline was the first for Michelle Fields, the former Breitbart News reporter who said she was shoved by former Trump campaign chief Corey Lewandowski.

Vice trims staff on two continents
The upstart news outlet cut 15 jobs in New York and Los Angeles on Tuesday, as well as several positions in the U.K., as it refocuses its digital operations on video. Josh Tyrangiel joined Vice last October in a top content position after serving as Bloomberg’s chief content officer. 

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