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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Cable channels to compete head on with broadcast


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#1 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 14 December 2011 - 02:06 PM

As we all have noticed, the cable channels have been competing against the broadcast networks for viewers in primetime. When you look at the top cable ratings for primetime in the week of 11/5-11/11 the number of viewers is significant, frequently higher than NBC and always higher than The CW:

Posted Image


Now, according to an Advertising Age report USA is joining TNT and ESPN in the "upfronts" competition with broadcast networks.

Personally, I think all primetime programming ad sales ought to be competing head-to-head. Let's get AMC, FX, etc., in this mix and force the broadcast nets to make programming decisions to compete against them.

AdAge offers this opinion:

USA isn't making a wrong move. But the addition of yet another dog-and-pony show in a week jammed full of them ought to leave some of the nation's more thoughtful advertisers a little cold. In a world that also includes Xbox, Netflix, Hulu, cable and satellite operators and iTunes, getting a little time to think things through has never been more critical.

For years, cable networks held their upfront presentations in the late winter and early spring, hoping to plant the idea of being considered in buyers' minds well before the broadcast-week hype. Many still do. And while it's true that the line between broadcast and cable has become blurred -- many younger viewers don't see a distinction -- there is something to be said for a more orderly series of presentations come upfront time. Figuring out how to plunk down $9 billion-plus dollars on TV ads (and that's just on broadcast) isn't something that should be done in a New York minute. TV executives ought to give marketers more time than that to process what's taking place.

Hey, "many younger viewers don't see a distinction" isn't sufficient. I don't see the distinction either since over 90% of TV homes get TV from cable or satellite.

As I've said in posts before, ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, PBS, The CW, etc., should be national cable channels IMHO. We need to start seeing "overnight half-hour live+same day ratings" from the nice folks at Nielsen covering primetime for all national channels drawing over 2 million viewers in any half-hour.

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#2 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 14 December 2011 - 05:17 PM

Funny there's only one show on that list that I've watched - The Closer.

But to your point, there are an increasing number of "cable" networks that have as many viewers as the traditional broadcast networks. While most cable series have shorter seasons (typically 13 weeks vs. 20-22 for broadcast) the production values, writing and acting on cable are now just as good as the old line nets.
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#3 OFFLINE   Drucifer

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 10:08 AM

Funny there's only one show on that list that I've watched - The Closer.

. . . .

Eight for me.

What is the current percentage of homes that only get OTA now?

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#4 ONLINE   Rich

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 11:18 AM

Funny there's only one show on that list that I've watched - The Closer.

But to your point, there are an increasing number of "cable" networks that have as many viewers as the traditional broadcast networks. While most cable series have shorter seasons (typically 13 weeks vs. 20-22 for broadcast) the production values, writing and acting on cable are now just as good as the old line nets.


You've never watched Sons of Anarchy? I think (and many others share this view) it's one of the very best shows on TV.

Rich

#5 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 12:53 PM

Eight for me.

What is the current percentage of homes that only get OTA now?

Conventional wisdom in the business generally derived from the Nielsen people is that 10% don't get cable or satellite. Some say 8% get TV OTA. There's a bit of an argument about this subject which you can read here. But even that analysis concludes:

If you assume that only the 110.6 million homes that are occupied full-time are counted by Nielsen, then you arrive at 88.6% of American homes have cable, satellite or FioS/U-verse. That's still not quite 90%, and it assumes that people who have a subscription service in their primary residence would not in their secondary one. That seems unlikely somehow. It also assumes that all other subscription television services provide service only to homes, again something that seems unlikely.

The recent trend towards streaming supplemented by OTA has created some "fuzzy" math (not to be confused with "fuzzy math").

"In a hundred years there'll be a whole new set of people."
"Always poke the bears. They sleep too much for their own good."

"If you're good enough, they'll talk about you." - Tom Harmon
A GEEZER who remembers watching TV in 1951 and was an Echostar customer from 1988 to 2008, now a Dish Network customer.
My AV Setup
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My Blog: The Redwood Guardian


#6 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 04:41 PM

Conventional wisdom in the business generally derived from the Nielsen people is that 10% don't get cable or satellite. Some say 8% get TV OTA.


Yeah, if you remember back to the conversion to digital (about 18 months ago???) there was far less of an outcry than people were expecting.
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#7 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 04:49 PM

You've never watched Sons of Anarchy? I think (and many others share this view) it's one of the very best shows on TV.

Rich


Just isn't to my taste. I've seen a few clips and it looks like a strong cast, but it doesn't really interest me.

The one show on that list that surprises me is Riz & Isles. I suffered through most of the first season mainly because of the cast, but I thought the writing was some of the most atrocious I've seen in a long time. It's shocking to me that it's still on the air. To waste the talents of an actress like Lorraine Bracco with such a poorly written caricature should be a crime.
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.......... There are none so blind as those who can not see it in HD.
.......... Directv customer since January 2000.
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