MR. METZGER GOES TO WASHINGTON - The most compelling reason to keep Congress out of the television business is how Congress manages its own television business.
A NON-EDITORIAL, TRUST US -- We've been struck over the past couple of weeks of endorsements for and against the so-called FAIR Ratings Act by the deafening silence from Madison Avenue. On the eve of today's Congressional hearings, the ad industry broke its silence, coming out unanimously against any legislation that would provide government oversight and regulation over the TV ratings process.
CLICK HERE IF YOU WANT TO BE COUNTED IN? -- On Wednesday, Congress will hold hearings on bills that would create a law regulating the TV ratings business. Like the debate leading up to it, opinions about the proposed legislation are pretty much drawn along partisan lines: Nielsen and its supporters oppose it; anti-Nielsen forces such as Don't Count Us Out are in favor of it.
MATURE, VICTOR - Until today, when we heard from the folks at New Outlook magazine, we thought "mature media" were media like newspapers and yellow pages, whose markets had matured so much that they had no more room for growth. Now we know they're really media outlets, like NO that reach a mature audience.
LET'S PARTY -- When it comes to media industry soirees, we're usually pretty neutral on the subject. We understand that parties are a necessary part of the media business, but it sometimes seems there is more schmoozing than there is working in the world of media.
TO CIRCUMVENT OR TO CULTIVATE, THAT IS THE QUESTION - When Greg Wilson first posed that question to us, it made us feel, well, a little existential. But the more we thought about it, the more we realized it ultimately would be what defines the existence of media.
GEE, WHIZ -- Lately, we've been hearing a lot about the increasing value of media capable of delivering a "captive audience." But the Sci Fi Channel appears be taking the concept to new extremities - er, make that extremes.
AN ENGAGING BALANCE SHEET - As far as metaphors go, the Magazine Publishers of America could have done worse than utilize the Olympics-esque sports imagery in its recently published 2004 annual report, but we're not sure we get the connection to magazine publishing per se, and certainly not to the organization's new promotional theme: "Magazines: The Medium of Engagement." Sure, sports are an engaging enough activity, especially at the high-level of competition depicted on the pages of the MPA report.
WE'VE BEEN KEEPING AN EYE ON DENNIS, BUT WHERE'S THE MENACE? -- As far as media storms go, Dennis is proving to be an especially media-savvy one. Not only did he make news by being first in what is turning out to be an unusually early hurricane season but he timed his arrival to coincide with an opportunistic ebb in the news cycle that followed the London bombings.
WANT A JOLT? TRY PLUGGING INTO GOOGLE'S NEXT VENTURE -- Ordinarily, we don't associate companies as disparate as Hearst, Goldman Sachs and Google in the same context, but after today's announcement that the three are backing a new, broadband-over-power lines venture, we can't get the implications of the alliance out of our minds. Why would the three partner on anything, much less something as obscure as utility lines? Because it's not a utility play at all, and may just be the future of omnipresent media distribution.