• Royal Maneuvers
    Everyone is getting into the original content game, including E! network. "The Royals" is the cabler's first scripted effort -- and it is a delicious, over-the-top cheap thrill. Like "Dallas," but for monarchs.
  • TV Stations Always Smiling, Perhaps Even Profiting, When Helping Their Networks
    For TV stations, it's always about getting a "piece" of the business. Others may call it revenue-sharing or whatever. CBS All Access, the network's $5.99 a month over-the-top, digital TV cloud service, has made an agreement with its TV stations. How much are stations getting? We don't know. But we can be sure that's a piece of this puzzle. This is a growing part of TV affiliates/network arrangements, especially as parent networks continue to seek out new digital platforms.
  • What Do You Fear Most: Cord-Cutters Or Cord-Cheaters?
    Some traditional TV viewers believe they don't really need much TV after all -- a digital antenna and perhaps Netflix is enough. Call them cord-cutters/shavers if you like. But now you will need to consider another category of viewer: cord-cheaters.
  • Why Reality TV May Continue To Grow In The Coming Years
    Taking a look at recent MoffettNathanson research on cable programming, one of the best-performing categories in the last five years has been "non-fiction" programming. Over that period, total day gross ratings points -- commercial ratings (C3) among 18-49 viewers -- grew 1%. All this while the likes of news, general entertainment, and kids programming sank anywhere from 5% to 7%.
  • Stand-Alone Services: Who's Next To Change The Landscape -- Maybe ESPN?
    With some of the biggest TV brands starting stand-alone services -- CBS, NBC (with comedy content), Nickelodeon and now HBO with its HBO Now effort -- one wonders not just who is next, but what bigger impact might be made with that move?
  • Time-Shifting That Goes Beyond TV
    I'm starting to time-shift my newspaper reading -- actual hard-copy newspaper reading. Good news for publishers: I hold on to newspapers well beyond their original publishing date, often for weeks -- at least a few sections. (And no, I'm not a hoarder. Not yet, anyway).
  • Blurring Entertainment Lines With Copycats
    TV has had its issues over copycat programming for decades -- but few cases go from lawsuit to trial. Still, consumers might turn on the TV and think: "Here we have another singing competition show" -- which has the obligatory three/four judges who sit opposite the performers and make evaluations. Of course, it may not be just singing -- but wannabe dancers, chefs, fashion designers, hair stylists, and even furniture-makers.
  • Personnel Shifts At TV Nets: Looking At Quick Fixes Or Long-Term Changes?
    Rare that any established TV network makes wholesale executive changes. More often than not, stuff comes in dribs and drabs. That said, sometimes the marketplace pushes senior management in this direction -- all to yield assurances to advertisers and business partners that their partnerships still have good value going forward.
  • Social Media Posing As TV Journalism: Who's Your Editor?
    Once again we come to an example of how social media isn't about journalism, but about the average person/average celebrity's viewpoint -- sometimes snarky, sometimes lame. It isn't necessarily about facts -- though that may be part of the equation. Seems that Canadian sports network TSN ran an automated scroll of tweets about the NHL. And one tweeter decided to blurb out an alleged extramarital affair concerning two Toronto Maple Leafs players and one celebrity actress. Nice. Now, all parties are angry -- not just about the massive untruth in it all, but that TSN would let this content make …
  • Stand-Alone TV Services: More Choices, Better Prices, Lots Of Confusion
    NBC continues to join the increasingly confusing array of cloud-based, stand-alone, Web-based TV services, with one featuring comedy shows and content. This one will cost around $3.50 a month and feature daily content from the likes of "Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" as well as clips from "Saturday Night Live." This announcement comes on the heels of news that Nickelodeon is starting up a kids-based streaming service.
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