• Post-Sweeps Slump Hits Syndies (Broadcasting & Cable)
    Nationally syndicated shows did what they normally do coming out of a sweeps period -- almost all of them went down.
  • Media Stock Forecasting Muddle (Forbes.com)
    It's obvious that ad spending tanks early when the economy weakens -- it's easier to cut ads than employees. The reverse also happens, but it doesn't foretell economic recoveries.
  • LaSalle's 'ER' Exit Leads Nielsens (AP)
    An estimated 28.9 million people watched Eriq LaSalle's swan song as Dr. Peter Benton on "ER" last Thursday, as television's most popular drama lost another original cast member.
  • NeuLevel Rolls Out New Plan on Disputed .Biz Names (Reuters)
    The company responsible for new ".biz" Internet addresses has scrapped its controversial method for handing out contested names, hoping that a new approach will provide a quick and lawsuit-free resolution.
  • Vivendi Seals USA Networks Deal (Reuters)
    Vivendi Universal secured a much-sought U.S. distribution outlet for its film and TV assets on Monday with a deal worth at least $10.3 billion to buy the entertainment arm of Barry Diller's USA Networks Inc.
  • Yahoo Tries Mining Gold From Web Data (Reuters)
    Since May of 2000 Yahoo! has quietly been selling subscriptions to its "Buzz" Index, which lets companies get lists of the most popular searches queries, track them over time, and chart them against their competitors' products. As Yahoo faces pressure to revive its struggling online advertising business, it has started to make more noise about Buzz.
  • Sources: ABC/ESPN Near NBA TV Deal (AP)
    NBC is on the verge of losing its third major sport since 1998, with the NBA close to leaving its longtime TV partner in favor of ABC and ESPN, The Associated Press learned.
  • NBC Plays Spin the Bottle (Variety)
    Facing a depressed ad market, NBC has turned to the bottle: it will become the first broadcast network to lift its self-imposed ban on hard-liquor advertising.
  • Toyota Considers Online Brand Launch (IAR)
    Following the successful, Internet-centric sales effort behind its Prius hybrid, the automaker says it's looking into a similar push for its as-yet-unnamed third, major vehicle line.
  • Microsoft Deal Aimed At Watching TV Watchers (Newsbytes.com)
    Predictive Networks, a maker of TV "personalization" software, yesterday said it reached a memorandum of understanding with Microsoft TV to provide products for targeting viewers of interactive television.
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