Terriers"? I had no idea it was a buddy detective series on FX. I thought it was about -- well, gnarling dogs. Indeed, I believed I saw print ads showing a gnarling dog. I didn't dig deeper. I never got a chance to see any TV promos of the show, which I'm sure would have showed off wise-cracking, not-always-by-the-book, ex-police force, hot-headed law-enforcement types. FX-style, of course.
It's been a year since Comcast said it had reached a deal to take over as a majority owner of NBC Universal. But Comcast now says it needs a bit more time. No surprises there. Comcast knew this was going to be a tough slog. But that hasn't stopped the critics -- or more than a few people pissed off that incoming NBC Universal president/CEO Steve Burke has already sketched out who his management team would be, all before the deal was done.
In this age of testy retransmission battles, a remark from a DirecTV executive -- that some low-rated cable networks might be on the outs -- came as no surprise. Retransmission wars have been eating into TV/video programmers' revenue for some time -- all because big TV networks are selling the point that their viewership is big and valuable. Derek Chang, executive vice president of content development and strategy for DirecTV, didn't single out any networks, but did say some questions should be asked, perhaps "just to remove certain channels from our platform if they are not relevant."
It's December, and you're asking the obvious question: Where is my family-friendly TV entertainment? Sure, you could go to the likes of Hallmark Channel, or maybe believe that NBC's "Parenthood," Fox's "Raising Hope" or ABC's "Brothers & Sisters" is your "family" programming. But, of course, you'd be wrong. TV and advertising executives want a bigger platform, one where the entire family can watch a TV show. (Like the bone-crunching, sexy-cheerleadering Super Bowl, which tthe NFL will tout as family programming).
What happens to old pay-TV channel bread-and-butter programming that runs on HBO and Showtime in the digital age? Not much in the near term. But ten years from now, the guess is we'll be seeing a different picture.
Imagine if a cable network group -- Viacom, Discovery, or even an NBC Universal (that is, the company it is today in 2010) -- were to find a way to stuff scores of new cable networks into the slim cable spectrum that's currently available. This is probably how Comcast feels about Netflix as it continues to increase the number of movies, TV shows, and other content through Comcast's broadband service. All this seems to be part of the reason Level 3, Netflix's online video server partner, is complaining about extra charges from Comcast.
It's already December -- yet more companies are still announcing their opposition to Comcast's takeover of NBC Universal. It's weird that almost exactly a year after the initial announcement of the deal, companies are only now realizing there is a problem here.