• Courting Failure To Find Hot Players - Or Programming
    An anonymous NBA general manager, quoted in ESPN The Magazine, plans to lose a lot of games this year in pursuit of the top pick in the next NBA draft. It's a key strategy, but even losing every game wouldn't be enough. All non-playoff teams participate in a lottery to grab the most highly desired college players. Just wondering if TV networks and programmers shouldn't act similarly. But it wouldn't be about getting the best college pick to write the next big drama or sitcom. Instead, the reference points would be about examining failure, learning lessons, and coming out the ...
  • Wait A Second! Didn't Kevin On That Cable Show Drive A Ford? Now A Beemer!
    It wasn't that long ago that USA Network's "White Collar" characters could be seen pitching viewers the Ford Focus -- both with in-show product placements and specific separate vignettes featuring the characters touting the car.More than one TV critic might have mused that the art expert/con man Neal Caffrey (played by Matt Bomer), with his taste for the finer things, might have been moved to drive a more upscale automobile - say, an import. Lo and behold, we have this season and...BMW!
  • Give TV A Chance By Breaking The Media Windows For Theatrical Dramas
    Can you name your favorite stodgy media platform or business? For Netflix, it's movie theater owners - the entertainment distribution business that doesn't want day-and-date movies to make their way to TV screens in any form. Ted Sarandos, chief content officer of Netflix, said recently that this current theatrical releasing model is "antiquated."
  • Botnets, Media Buyers And Disruptive Digital Technology
    What if traditional TV commercials were seen not by human beings but by machines? In the online digital video world, machines can "see" commercials - which doesn't help "human-being" viewer engagement and "real people" purchasing.
  • Oh, Canada: Beta Test For U.S. A La Carte Programming
    The beta test for U.S. a la carte programming has begun -- in Canada. That country's law of the land will require operators to offer a la carte programming to consumers who demand it.
  • Journalists And Audiences Are Hungry For 'Big Data' Stories
    With more public information available on everyone and everything, some believe journalism should follow the change. It's not a case of following the money, but more of following and analyzing "big data."
  • 4K Service Won't Come To The U.S. Unless Someone Pays
    Listen up, TV set manufacturers: Make all the 4K equipment you want, both for industry and consumers, but networks and content providers might not buy in -- especially considering the financial results from the last big TV technology changes. "We spent millions going to HD, and never got an extra dime from advertisers," Fox Sports field operations executive Jerry Steinberg noted at this week's conference of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE). "It seems today [4K broadcasting] is a monumental task with not a lot of return."
  • Are Entertainment Prices Peaking -- Or Consumers Overspending?
    Consumer entertainment pricing continues to be in flux, much to the chagrin of content providers. Two news stories point to more changes, including possible savings for consumers:
  • Tell Me Everything Behind Your Ad & Maybe I'll Buy -- Even From A Politician
    Wouldn't you like to know who's behind those still-running, anti-Obamacare ads on your local stations? The FCC, under "Disclose Act" rules adopted last year, has instructed stations to identify -- on special website areas -- who is paying for ads and for what fee.
  • Invest in Your Favorite Show -- Maybe With Real Money?
    Like a TV show? I mean really like it, so much you'd like to invest in it? There should be a way of making this kind of investment -- some would say, wager. This wouldn't be about buying CBS, Time Warner, or 21st Century Fox. It would be about investing in specific programming. Think fantasy football, baseball, or other sports -- on a somewhat bigger scale. Pick your own shows and create your own network team.
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