• House Commerce Names Senior Staff
    Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), incoming chairman of the House Energy & Commerce Committee, announced his senior staffers under staff director Gary Andres, including the retention of the Communications Subcommittee chief counsel. The senior staff was presented as follows: Michael Beckerman, who had been policy director, moves up to deputy staff director; Jim Barnett, former general counsel to then chairman Joe Barton (R-Tex.), returns in the same capacity; Alez Marrero, communications director for the House Committee on Education and Labor, will be communications director; Sean Bonyun, who has been Upton's communications director, moves up to deputy communications director for ...
  • Comcast Should Provide Contracts To FCC
    Advocacy groups asked the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to demand more documents from Comcast Corp. before voting on the cable company's proposed merger with General Electric Co.'s NBC Universal. Comcast should supply the FCC with contracts to carry other companies' programs since 2006, says Andrew Jay Schwartzman, policy director of Washington-based Media Access Project. The contracts will help the agency determine whether Comcast restricts program suppliers from selling their shows to competing online providers, Schwartzman said in the letter filed on behalf of his group, Free Press, Consumer Federation of America, Public Knowledge and Consumers Union. FCC Chairman Julius ...
  • 'Idol' Hires Chew As Music Director
    Among the changes for the upcoming tenth season of "American Idol" is a new music director to fill the seat Rickey Minor vacated when he left to lead "The Tonight Show" band at the end of Season 9. Ray Chew, a veteran of television music shows, has been handed the title and is already hard at work coming up with arrangements for the new crop of contestants. Chew has served as bandleader and musical director for such programs as NBC's "It's Showtime at the Apollo" and "The Singing Bee." He also curated all the music for the 2008 Democratic ...
  • Oprah Network Has Little Oprah
    The Oprah Winfrey Network launching Saturday is wary of promising too much of a good thing - Winfrey herself. In stoking interest in the cable channel, the goal is to exploit Winfrey's popularity while emphasizing that OWN won't be all Oprah, all the time. "We really don't want to be a niche brand. We want to be a mainstream cable" network with appeal beyond Winfrey's fan base, said Darren Schillace, vice president of consumer marketing for OWN. "Phase one" of the marketing effort aims to "manage expectations that it's not 24/7 Oprah on the network," Schillace said, with Winfrey ...
  • Netflix Considers Overseas Expansion
    Online video and DVD distributor Netflix is talking with several advertising and media agencies about potential international assignments, according to sources. Currently, Netflix provides service in the U.S. and Canada. But the company is poised for overseas expansion, according to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. He recently told The Hollywood Reporter that Europe, Latin America and Asia are markets the company would consider entering as soon as the recently launched Canadian operation gets its bearings. WPP's MediaCom handles U.S. media agency chores, while Omnicom Group's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners is responsible for creative.
  • Oprah Net Forecast: 2 Years Of Losses
    The Oprah Winfrey Network on Discovery is just days from its debut, but one analyst already sees red ink in its future. Caris & Company analyst David Miller expects the network, debuting on Jan.1 in place of the old Discovery Health channel, to spend more on programming and marketing than it brings in in advertising revenue. The channel will feature Suze Orman, Dr. Oz and reruns of the Oprah Winfrey Show. Miller expects the new network to pull in $100 million worth of ads in 2011, but spend $85 million on programming and $40 million on marketing. By ...
  • Will Video Previews Help Android App Sales?
    Google overhauled its Android Market earlier this month, but appears to have held back one key enhancement that could help boost mobile app sales: demo videos of applications within the Android Market. Google either hasn't mentioned this feature, but AppsFire, a third-party portal to help discover and install Android software, has just added the video demos to its latest software version. According to the AppsFire blog, Google recently made the API changes necessary to tap into these video demonstrations, meaning other third-parties could leverage the software demonstrations as well. Developers who upload videos to show off their Android ...
  • KCET Drops PBS Kids Shows, Adds Adult Fare
    When KCET stops broadcasting PBS programming - after four decades as Los Angeles' major PBS outlet - gone will be the furry friends of "Curious George," the scientific principles of "Sid the Science Kid" and the wacky adventures of "Clifford the Big Red Dog." The Peabody Award-winning series "A Place of Our Own" and "Los NiƱos en Su Casa" will remain part of the station's morning programming. But caregivers looking to occupy youngsters past the morning will likely have to tune elsewhere. Whereas KCET's current weekday schedule features children's programming from 5 a.m. to 2 p.m. -- including ...
  • 'Palm Beach Post,' Channel 5 Partner
    The Palm Beach Post and WPTV-Channel 5 announced an agreement to form a news partnership between the area's largest newspaper and highest-rated TV station. The agreement calls for Channel 5 to feature a front-page story from the newspaper during the 11 p.m. news and also during morning news shows and on WPTV-produced news on WFLX-Fox 29. Post columnists and reporters will appear on air. The Post will feature Channel 5 video on its Web site, and The Post's print and online weather page will feature TV weather forecasts. The Palm Beach Daily News also will be part of ...
  • SC Johnson Puts Global Ad Biz In Review
    Chicago ad agency DraftFCB could lose one of its top accounts as SC Johnson says it will put its global advertising business - estimated at over $1 billion - into review. SC Johnson decision marks the second decades-old account that has shaken DraftFCB. The review comes after Kraft Foods Inc. shifted most of its work out of the agency earlier this year. The SC Johnson review covers the global creative assignment now handled by DraftFCB, plus media buying and planning now handled by Initiative and Naked in the U.S., as well as digital, direct, shopper and promotion marketing handled ...
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