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Steve Sternberg

Member since September 2009Contact Steve

Steve Sternberg is currently Editor-in-Chief of The Sternberg Report. He has more then 30 years of television and video analysis experience, having held top research posts at Bozell, TN Media, Magna Global, and ION Media Networks. He also authors The Sternberg Report (www.sternbergreport.com)

Articles by Steve All articles by Steve

  • Pre-Upfront Thoughts: Does The Upfront Still Even Matter? in Research Intelligencer on 05/18/2022

    In a series of presentations to the advertising industry this week, the major media companies are announcing plans for their linear and streaming platforms during the next year or so, which includes their respective fall TV schedules. This marks the start of the "upfront" season, when advertisers spend upwards of $20 billion buying commercial time on national television shows scheduled to air during the 2022-23 broadcast year. As I do every year, I will be reporting on each company's presentation, and once I watch all the new series pilots, evaluating their upcoming broadcast network programming. But first I have a few pre-upfront thoughts.

  • Chasing Netflix: In TV's New Golden Age, Who Leads The Way? in Research Intelligencer on 04/28/2022

    Nearly half of U.S. homes (46%) with a broadband internet connection subscribed to four or more video streaming services at the end of the first quarter of 2021 (according to Parks Associates). That was up from 22% a year earlier. While I don't have the figures for 2002 yet, it's certainly well over 50%. With powerful and deep-pocketed competitors such Disney, WarnerMedia, Comcast, and Apple, bursting onto the streaming scene over the past two years, the fact that Netflix lost less than 1% of its subscribers in the past year (which would have been a mild gain had it not pulled out of Russia), and continues to dominate any list of the most viewed streaming series, should be seen as a remarkable accomplishment and a sign of ongoing strength. In this week's edition, I outline who the major contenders are for a post-Netflix dominance of the new Golden Age of television.

  • Making The Academy Awards More Viewer -- And Advertiser -- Friendly in Research Intelligencer on 04/11/2022

    As an avid movie fan and reasonably heavy moviegoer (pre-pandemic), I look forward to watching the Academy Awards every year. And every year I find myself asking the same question: "Is it always this boring?" I invariably find myself answering, "yes" ("The Slap" notwithstanding). And every year I forget the previous year's telecast and look forward to watching the show all over again. In this week's edition, I provide some suggestions for making the Oscars telecast even friendlier to viewers and advertisers alike.

  • More Pre-Upfront Questions (And Maybe Some Answers) in Research Intelligencer on 03/29/2022

    In our last issue I posed five important questions leading into this year's upfront season. The response was strong and very positive, so I decided to add a few more in this week's edition.

  • Pre-Upfront Questions (And Maybe Some Answers) in Research Intelligencer on 03/14/2022

    Until the early 2000s, changes to the television landscape - what was available to view and how it could be viewed - were gradual. The slow pace of change made predicting consumer viewing habits relatively simple, and slow-to-change research companies didn't have to pivot too quickly, nor innovate too often. Over the past 20 years, however, the environment has been in a constant state of change. How people use and relate to media, video, and individual television shows is largely dependent on the ever-expanding array of media devices and subscription video platforms they can access. While most people eventually got the same access to almost everything (pre-2005), this is no longer the case. Developing national television samples that adequately represent the country at large has become increasingly difficult. In this week's edition I raise the most vital pre-upfront questions you should be asking yourself. And hopefully, provide some answers.

  • Catch These Marvel Series Before They Leave Netflix in Research Intelligencer on 02/25/2022

    In 2013, Marvel entered into a deal with Netflix to develop series featuring some of its lesser-known "street-level" heroes. Unlike the world-saving superheroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (such as Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, Captain Marvel, and Dr. Strange), these characters, with their more personal, neighborhood-centered stories, better lend themselves to series-long plot lines - as opposed to blockbuster theatrical movies.

  • Nine Sci-Fi Streaming Series You Should Check Out in Research Intelligencer on 02/14/2022

    Science fiction is a broad category with so many sub-genres that trying to designate a "best of" list seems silly. How can you compare fantasy, horror, or stories about the supernatural, to those featuring aliens, a post-apocalyptic world, dystopian futures, alternate histories, parallel worlds, space operas, or time travel? And how can you compare any of those to well-established franchises such as Star Wars and Star Trek? While there is some obvious cross-over appeal, many of these sub-genres have substantially different fan bases. That said, in this week's edition, I zero in on the "Top 9" science fiction series currently worth streaming.

  • Linear TV Still Rules, Off-Network Leads Streaming -- Maybe in Research Intelligencer on 01/24/2022

    I've written a number of pieces over the past few years about the flaws in current TV/video audience measurement and what can be done about it. You can read past issues of The Sternberg Report for deeper analysis. This week's edition is a continuation rather than a recap of my previous thoughts. If the total reach among adults for linear TV is more than 80% of the U.S., which is higher than streaming penetration, then more people are reached by ad-supported broadcast and cable in a given week than by all the streaming services combined. The highest rated series on television is not Netflix's Squid Game, but Paramount Network's Yellowstone. More people watch an episode of Yellowstone each week than any episode of any streaming program. If Paramount dropped an entire season at once, it would certainly generate more hours of viewing than anything reported on any streaming platform.

  • The Top 21 TV Shows Of 2021: Part 3 in Research Intelligencer on 01/12/2022

    There are more great shows on television today than any time in history - a Golden Age+, if you will. In the original so-called Golden Age of television, there were just as many bad shows as good ones (probably more). Back then, choices were limited to three broadcast networks and a few independent stations. Everyone simply watched whatever network programmers put on their schedules, and if you were tuned to one hit show, you often stayed on that network for the next show. In this week's edition I feature the last in a three-party series of the 21 top series of 2021 (I hesitate to use the word "best"), with the caveat that there are probably more than a few excellent series I haven't seen. Some of these are non-English-language international series that can be watched either with subtitles, or dubbed into English (or several other languages).

  • Top 21 TV Shows Of 2021: Part 2 in Research Intelligencer on 12/20/2021

    There are more great shows on television today than any time in history, creating a Golden Age-plus, if you will. In the original so-called Golden Age of television, there were just as many bad shows as good ones (probably more). Back then, choices were limited to three broadcast networks and a few independent stations. Everyone simply watched whatever network programmers put on their schedules. These days, nobody has to watch the so-called "least objectionable programming" anymore, and those under 30 have probably never even heard that phrase. In this week's edition, I provide the second installment of my three-part series making a case for why these shows are the best of the best from the past year.

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