Take cover: Forecast darkens for cable spending

August 13, 2008

storm-clouds.jpgAnybody out there in TV land riding an Olympic buzz (NBC’s ratings have been scorching) will be brought back down to earth by these numbers from SNL Kagan.

NBC winning big in the games

August 11, 2008

swim.jpg NBC is putting up big numbers so far in the Olympics.

Start with the opening ceremony. While some complained that the event couldn’t be seen live in the United States, the move to delay the broadcast and run it during prime-time paid dividends. Some 34 million viewers tuned in, up about 35 percent since the last summer games.

That will be $1 billion, thank you very much

August 7, 2008

hammer.jpgNBC Universal has officially locked up more than $1 billion in advertising sales for the Olympics — and says it has more to sell as the games begin on Friday.

‘How do you like the weather in Jordan, Senator?’

July 18, 2008

barackThe big three networks — and their big three evening news anchors — are all over Barack Obama’s trip to the Middle East. Extensive coverage is planned, interviews will be touted, and ABC, NBC and CBS are sure to document his every more.

More newspaper cuts… anyone surprised?

June 26, 2008

tribune-tower.jpgSo Tribune Co is cutting jobs at The Sun in Baltimore and Hartford Courant.

Not to sound callous, but by this point should anyone be surprised by news that a publisher is getting rid of jobs? After all, this is shaping up to be one of the worst years in memory for the newspaper business.

Yachts, parties, lions – it must be Cannes

June 17, 2008

1cannes.jpgIt’s one of the big weeks for advertising (well, in terms of parties and sunshine), so we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to check in on Cannes. More than 12,000 advertising types have gathered in the South of France to toast the industry — and perhaps even collect an award.

Television totally rules!

June 10, 2008

dollars.jpgWhat’s all this talk about the struggles of the TV industry?

Sure, ratings were down again last season. Screenwriters walked off the job, and while they eventually settled, the actors may be next to strike. No new shows really caught fire, and that Web thing sure does seem to be stealing advertising dollars. Then there’s $4/gallon gasoline, a housing slump, job losses — which all adds up to a generally lousy economy.

Fox: King of the world!

May 23, 2008

strike.jpgTV strike? What TV strike?

Seems that Fox survived the 14-week writers strike, and arguably thrived if you stack its prime-time ratings up against major broadcast networks. It has  finished the season as the undisputed ratings leader for the first time, thanks to a combination of the Super Bowl and that little talent show known as “American Idol.”

The Upfronts are dead, long live the Upfronts

May 13, 2008

upfront2.jpgFor years we have interviewed media analyst/newsletter editor/industry maven Jack Myers about the television upfronts. We have tried to track him down at upfront parties, cocktail napkin in hand, to get his initial reaction on the new shows trotted out by the networks while he talks to the most senior executives. We have written up his forecasts and predictions on how many billions of advertising dollars the nets will say they have booked.