Breakfast Briefing: Winter Games start with history, pageantry

Hoping for a slow news day to ease you into the weekend? No such luck. Your guide to a news-packed Friday morning below.

(Photo credit: Getty Images).
(Photo credit: Getty Images).

The Opening Ceremony for the Winter Olympic Games (USA Today) in Pyeongchang, South Korea, is underway (though you can still watch the event tonight on NBC if you can avoid spoilers for that long). The Games got underway with a historic moment, as the sister of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un shook the hand of South Korea’s president (CNN). Some experts believe North Korea is the early leader in the games’ propaganda contest (Bloomberg). Coca-Cola, Samsung, and Procter & Gamble are among the brands viewers will be seeing the most during the Pyeongchang games (Campaign).

The latest federal government shutdown ended before the blame game could even begin. Both the Senate and House of Representatives passed a sweeping spending plan overnight to end the six-hour shutdown (ABC News). The deal will boost federal spending by $300 billion (Reuters).

There’s a new marcomms chief at the Financial Times. The newspaper has brought on Finola McDonnell, former VP of marketing and comms at CNBC, for the London-based role. Her predecessor, Darcy Keller, is relocating to Austin, Texas (PRWeek U.K.)

Amazon may have its sights set on the shipping industry. The company is planning to launch a delivery service, branded as "Shipping with Amazon," in Los Angeles that could put it in direct competition with UPS and FedEx (Wall Street Journal).

White House Chief of Staff John Kelly has sent a memo to staffers reassuring them that he takes the issue of domestic violence seriously, calling it "abhorrent" (NBC News). The internal comms memo comes amid growing scrutiny over Kelly’s handing of the dismissal of Staff Secretary Rob Porter, who has been accused of abuse by two ex-wives (New York Times).

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