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Network brave enough to NOT show the debates


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17 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Galaxie6411

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:37 AM

I've thought about this for years. You have a minority of people that even vote yet every network shows the debates. So who will be brave/smart and not show them and go with new programming? My guide shows 6 channels (2abc's and PBS) that are OTA all airing it, there is just no reason for that and to me should be a great opportunity to not air them. I think Fox would have the best opportunity since they have Fox News and just air that version anyway, NBC would also be in the same boat with MSNBC although the debates might be better ratings than any of their crappy shows.

Just something I think about every 4 years and wonder who will finally break the mold, especially now with fewer and fewer people getting only OTA.

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#2 OFFLINE   SayWhat?

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:55 AM

I've always felt that each such event should be aired live by only one network. Next event, rotate to the next network in line.

Whoever airs live does so without commentary or spin. They can add their spin in followup reports.
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#3 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 12:49 PM

I'm torn ...
As a satellite TV subscriber I have hundreds of options ... only 13 of my channels will be carrying the debate. (Five local channels: ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, PBS; plus BLAZE, CNBC, CNN, CSPAN, Current, FoxBusiness, FoxNews and MSNBC. Unless I missed a channel.)

Do I really need 13 ways of watching the same questions and evasions? No. But I don't see any network stepping away from carrying the debates. It is the news of the moment.

And it is important. We have an election coming up in five weeks. I recommend that all Americans of voting age pick a channel, watch and then immediately go to non-news programming at the end of the debate.

#4 ONLINE   dpeters11

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 01:03 PM

I'm torn ...
As a satellite TV subscriber I have hundreds of options ... only 13 of my channels will be carrying the debate. (Five local channels: ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, PBS; plus BLAZE, CNBC, CNN, CSPAN, Current, FoxBusiness, FoxNews and MSNBC. Unless I missed a channel.)

Do I really need 13 ways of watching the same questions and evasions? No. But I don't see any network stepping away from carrying the debates. It is the news of the moment.

And it is important. We have an election coming up in five weeks. I recommend that all Americans of voting age pick a channel, watch and then immediately go to non-news programming at the end of the debate.


I'd like to watch a debate where they don't know what's going to be asked (though they obviously would know the basic topics), and be called out by the moderator if they say something contradictory to what they've said before, at least in the recent past. The debates are too controlled at this point I think.

Besides, I think most people have already made up their mind. The debate won't change that.

#5 OFFLINE   Davenlr

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 01:07 PM

Besides, I think most people have already made up their mind. The debate won't change that.


I am with you there. Everyone I know already has a strong opinion one way or the other. I havent talked to anyone who is planning on voting that hasnt already decided.

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#6 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 02:20 PM

I'd like to watch a debate where they don't know what's going to be asked (though they obviously would know the basic topics), and be called out by the moderator if they say something contradictory to what they've said before, at least in the recent past. The debates are too controlled at this point I think.

I have only seen that in fiction ... twice by Aaron Sorkin. The first time the candidates drove the push for a "real" debate and they held one. The second time the network pushed for a "real" debate and was shot down.

I don't believe we will see such a debate outside of fiction.

Besides, I think most people have already made up their mind. The debate won't change that.

94% of America likely has made up their mind. It is the remaining 6% that need to be swayed ... as well as to get as many of the 94% "decided" group to actually go to the polls and vote. It doesn't matter when you make up your mind if you don't vote.

#7 OFFLINE   Galaxie6411

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 04:21 PM

It isn't 94% of Americans it is 94% of those that will vote so we are down to 10 million or less that apparently have no idea of what each party stands for. I'll save that argument on whether they should even be voting for a political forum. They are playing to 10 million people on 10+ stations. Broken up evenly they are getting less than 1 million viewers and no commercial breaks. To me there is a lot of money to be had there by showing anything else, especially new content. They are already raking in a ton of money from non stop political ads, maybe no one wants to piss off either side and take a chance they'll pull ads from that channel. That would make even more people watch the channel IMO though.

I like the rotating idea, or better yet put PBS to use and have them air it with no commentary.

#8 OFFLINE   PrinceLH

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 04:48 PM

It's a public service. Maybe it's a mandate, in regards to their over the air licence. No matter, it's already been skewed through the intervention of the press. It'll just play out and the drama will be realized, late on election night. It's too close to call.

#9 OFFLINE   Drew2k

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 05:53 PM

I think PrinceLH has it.

The networks have an obligation to provide public services, and covering the conventions and the debates definitely do that.

#10 OFFLINE   Alan Gordon

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 06:00 PM

So who will be brave/smart and not show them and go with new programming?


The CW will not be airing the debates.

The season premiere of "Supernatural" will be going head to head this Wednesday with the debates on the East Coast...

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#11 OFFLINE   Galaxie6411

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 06:57 PM

You are right but they have never aired them nor are they a major network, I am talking about the big 4 that are available OTA pretty much everywhere. I will be watching Supernatural, glad it moved away from the Friday death slot.

If it truly was a mandate or obligation the CW would be airing it. I cringe at the thought of a debate where each side is just trying to find nothing more than a "gotcha" sound bite from the other side as a PSA to the public.

#12 OFFLINE   RunnerFL

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 07:41 PM

It's not really a mandate, it's more of a strongly worded suggestion. One of those "it's in your best interest" kind of things.
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#13 OFFLINE   Mark Holtz

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 07:47 PM

I'm sure that there are portions of the country that do not get all of the network affiliates. They probably consider it a "major news event".
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#14 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 08:19 PM

The network affiliates do not have much of a choice. The programming they would normally air won't be there ... all four OTA networks will preempt programming. The locals do not have to carry it - but it is the easiest choice to "go with the network".

None of the major networks are going to cede news to another network. A face to face face off between the two candidates is news.


The cable network coverage seems excessive. Do MSNBC and CNBC both need to carry the debate? Fox News and Fox Business? CNN is not putting the debate on HLN. The newer cable channels Current and theBlaze are not missing out on a chance to air the debate (with whatever graphics they can add) as a lead in to their post debate discussions. I suppose the post debate shows on CNBC and Fox Business might be more business oriented ... how the statements made effect the economy ... than the commentary on MSNBC and Fox News.

#15 OFFLINE   renbutler

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 07:52 AM

Pollster Scott Rasmussen said that 15% of likely voters remain uncommitted or open to changing their mind.

#16 OFFLINE   Rnrboy

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 08:18 AM

Pollster Scott Rasmussen is not to be trusted since he is just an arm of Fox News...

#17 OFFLINE   renbutler

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 08:27 AM

Pollster Scott Rasmussen is not to be trusted since he is just an arm of Fox News...


LOL

Come on, let's keep the polemics out of this discussion. Everybody's been doing a good job up until now.

#18 OFFLINE   Getteau

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 01:23 PM

I have only seen that in fiction ... twice by Aaron Sorkin. The first time the candidates drove the push for a "real" debate and they held one. The second time the network pushed for a "real" debate and was shot down.

I don't believe we will see such a debate outside of fiction.


I agree. Here's my prediction for the debates.
* Each candidate will follow their canned set of talking points whether they actually answer the question or not.
* The game show hosts, sorry, debate moderators, won;t call anyone out for not answering or answering a different question than was asked.
* That night, each party will try to spin the others parties answers into various gotcha ads and talk about how their candidate was basically the second coming.
* Each party will have their "fact checkers" say that everything the other guy said was completely false and how their guys stuff was 100% accurate if viewed just this way and under these circumstances
* Each parties news outlets will say their guy won the debate and the other guy lost
* Each network will continue to push the horse race and continue to say how important these debates are until the day after the election because it's good for ratings.

As for me, I'll probably watch some of the "reality" TV I've recorded on one of my DVR's. It's probably about as real as these debates will be.

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