If a French judge had been caught scheming to deprive the U.S. gymnastics team of its gold medal, the deceit may not have caused the furor that the publication of an NBC email address sparked over the weekend. On Tuesday, the emerging international crisis looks to have been averted, somehow without a Barack Obama-David Cameron summit.
Comcast executives had to be celebrating Sunday morning. Or exhaling. There was some early validation that the company's massive investment to secure Olympic rights through 2020 may be worth it. Saturday prime-time household ratings and viewership came in way above the 2004 Beijing Games, according to NBC.
Every Olympics has a defining moment. The London Games will have a defining technology. This is the iPad Olympics.
Viacom this month joined with dozens of others in filing a court brief expressing opposition to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines marriage as between a man and a woman. There were business reasons for doing it, but clearly there was also welcome principle involved.
With swimming and gymnastics live in prime time, household ratings for the 2008 Beijing Games topped the 2004 Athens event by 8%. Based on one estimate, NBCU isn't so sure London will bring an increase in ratings. Yet the NBCU sales department may be playing it conservatively. Olympic viewership can be hard to predict. Compelling storylines can emerge unexpectedly, sparking national debates or patriotic surges, which can translate into higher Nielsen numbers.
Could Mitt Romney really be ceding a big Olympic stage to President Obama? In a deal with NBCUniversal, the Obama campaign has placed a $6 million national Olympic ad buy. The arrangement will have the campaign running a prime-time spot 15 straight nights on NBC, beginning Friday during the Opening Ceremony.
One of the more extraordinary aspects of the NBA's apparent done deal to place advertiser logos on jerseys is how relatively little the league expects to collect from the arrangements. While it may be intentionally lowering expectations, the league suggested last week the brand patches would bring in a combined $100 million a year for its 30 teams.
How quixotic is this? A cable executive wants Republicans and Democrats, who can't agree on whether the grass is green, to take the lead in forging an extraordinary compromise in the TV industry. Yes, Mediacom CEO Rocco Commisso is asking Washington for the kind of help it needs itself. So, marvel at his chutzpah.
In more ways than one, Wieden + Kennedy continues to be the ultimate trophy agency. Holding companies would love to acquire it, but it holds fiercely to its independence. Perhaps it's because executives fear creative freedom might disappear. The agency is certainly thriving with the opportunities that brings. On Thursday, W+K landed three of the five nominees for the "Outstanding Commercial" Emmy award. A win would add to its three-year winning streak.
It's weeks like these where a sort of TV socialism seems appealing. Really, how great is the free market?