• Cablevision Asks Court To Review 'Must Carry'
    Cablevision has asked the Supreme Court to review the constitutionality of the must-carry rules, which require cable operators to carry local broadcast stations. What was once a cable monopoly, Cablevision concedes to the court, "has been replaced by vibrant competition." Specifically, Cablevision wants the court to hear the cable company's appeal of a Second Circuit decision upholding the FCC's must-carry mandate for station WRNN. A three-judge panel in June 2009 rejected Cablevision's challenge to an FCC order requiring carriage of WRNN New York in some Long Island communities under the must-carry provision. The full court in October rejected ...
  • 'WSJ' Savvy: Targets NYC News, Advertisers
    "A brilliant move" is what Mort Zuckerman, the publisher of The Daily News calls The Wall Street Journal upcoming NYC metro section. And while the Murdoch-owned paper is aiming at The New York Times, which has lost some local news coverage. He's not referring to losing editorial circulation, however. "Frankly, it's not the readers I'm worried about, it's the advertisers" says Zuckerman. Others who may have cause for concern: Newsday, the New York Observer, Time Out New York, New York Magazine and even Murdoch's own New York Post. "Everybody's going to be affected because there's a finite amount ...
  • CBS Rejects GoDaddy Super Bowl Ad
    A Go Daddy Group Super Bowl spot was rejected by CBS, which has gotten flack for its decision to run an anti-abortion spot for Focus on the Family. The rejected commercial features an effeminate former football star named Lola who designs lingerie for women and refers to a Go Daddy online retail portal. The spot is narrated by race car driver Danica Patrick. Go Daddy was told the ad "had the potential to offend a significant number of people." "It's the first time for me I've been baffled," said Go Daddy CEO Bob Parsons. "Usually we may get an ...
  • Spike Investigates Late-Night TV
    The Spike cable network is looking to get into late-night television, so it is developing a new late-night talk and comedy show with Thom Beers, who helps make the network's "1000 Ways to Die" series. Spike will seek out ordinary people doing extraordinary things, like a convenience store clerk who faced down robbers or a stockbroker who quit his job to fight in Afghanistan. So far, no air date, host or even title. It will air once a week at first, but could become daily if well-received. Sharon Levy, head of programming for Spike, says the network, which targets ...
  • CNN Names Crowley 'State of Union' Anchor
    CNN named veteran political correspondent Candy Crowley anchor of "State of the Union," CNN's Sunday political affairs program. John King, who formerly held the spot, will take over Lou Dobbs' old slot -- at 7 pm. -- in the upcoming week. Crowley, CNN's senior political analyst, has filled in on State of the Union since King left. She officially takes over next Sunday, Feb. 7, when the show goes at 9 a.m. followed by "Fareed Zakaria GPS" at 10 a.m. CNN/US President Jon Klein said: "Every Sunday she'll translate Washington-speak into plain English that every American can understand."
  • Study: Federal Subsidies For Press Decline
    Government subsidies have been crucial to American newspapers and magazines for more than two centuries, even if most journalists and readers don't realize it, according to a new report by the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the USC. Government support for newspapers and magazines has fallen from more than $4 billion in 1970, to less than $2 billion. Since 1792, publications have enjoyed discounted postage rates, but over the last 40 years, it's whittled down from 75% to 11%, a difference of about $1.7 billion in today's dollars. Local, state and federal laws require governments to ...
  • More Spec Scripts Picked Up By Networks
    The latest spec from "Practice" creator David E. Kelley, the legal drama "Kindreds," landed at NBC during a pilot-pickup season in which specs are hotter than ever. NBC's pilot orders for spec scripts include "Kindreds" and J.J. Abrams' "Undercovers," both from WBTV, as well as "The Event," by writer Nick Wauters, which was reworked through UMS. Carter Bays and Craig Thomas' comedy spec "Livin' on a Prayer," from 20th TV, received a green light from CBS. It joins two other 20th TV comedy specs-turned-pilots: "Traffic Light," by "Wedding Crashers" co-writer Bob Fisher, and "Most Likely to Succeed," by veteran ...
  • Oscar Ads May Draw Bigger Audience, Prices Same As '09
    The price for a 30-second ad in ABC's Oscar telecast is running between $1.3 million and $1.5 million, according to media buyers, which tracks even with last year's prices. In 2008, the same spot was going for $1.82 million. This year, however, 10 pictures will content for best pictures, which may attract a larger audience. Ad buyers say ABC still has commercial time available during the upcoming Oscars, but sales have improved, along with the economic outlook. The Academy Awards air Sunday, March 7. For the first time last year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences ...
  • CNBC Big Draw For NBCU, Comcast
    NBC used to lead broadcast networks in prime time, with "Seinfeld" and "ER," but it now languishes in last place. By contrast, its cable properties are profitable, growing and now contribute 80% of the group's cash flow. It's why Comcast bought a controlling stake in NBC Universal from General Electric and Vivendi for $30bn. NBC Universal does not disclose such numbers, but CNBC is reputed to have become its second-most lucrative channel after USA Networks, with an operating profit of between $300m and $400m. As such, it serves as a microcosm of what Comcast sees in NBC Universal. ...
  • iPad Not Killing Kindle - Yet
    The buzz in the gadget world has shifted from Amazon.com to Apple Inc's iPad tablet, but analysts say the world's largest retailer's Kindle device is safe in its smaller market -- for now. On Wednesday, shares of Amazon closed up 2.74%. "They (Amazon) don't have to worry about the market for their product suddenly drying up because everyone's migrating to the iPad," said Forrester Research analyst James McQuivey. He gives Amazon a year to show it's staying ahead of Apple. James Friedland, a Cowen & Co analyst, agreed: "This doesn't change the game," he said.
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