Fox Searchlight, a medium-sized movie studio focused on big adult-skewing, award-winning movies, is starting its own TV unit, Searchlight Television. Netflix, Amazon and Apple are putting billions into TV and movie production.
Shari Redstone, president of National Amusements (which controls 80% of the voting shares of CBS and Viacom) and vice-chair of both CBS and Viacom, is pushing hard for this merger -- possibly because it seems to make sense that bigger is better.
TV stations have strong brand awareness in local markets. This is a big plus when it comes to extending that brand into the digital space, but it might not be enough. There must be more -- and better -- integration with linear TV.
Heading into the TV upfront selling period, traditional TV execs might look at one simple message to advertisers: Buy more. The TV business is not built on the idea that viewers' data is the product sold.
At around $10 a month -- the going price for HBO and Netflix -- users don't worry about privacy violations. Millions of people already pony up. In Netflix's case, it counts 55 million U.S customers. Would Facebook decide to mimic streaming networks and charge as well?
In a recent Kantar Millward Brown study, the most positive advertising form for young Gen Z and Gen Y consumers is cinema advertising.
The misuse of Facebook users' information -- now possibly affecting 87 million people -- comes at a time when billions of advertising dollars will be spent on traditional TV broadcast and cable networks, as well as national syndication TV companies.
David Smith, Sinclair's executive chairman, said "the print media is so left wing as to be meaningless dribble, which accounts for why the industry is and will fade away."
Blockchain technology enables an anonymous, decentralized record of transactions -- and can provide much-needed brand safety and fraud avoidance. That's good for marketers.
Sinclair's monolithic on-air advertising of its anti-"fake news" promos doesn't provide many answers. And it doesn't ask many questions.