Category Archives: TV Business

What the Mayweather-Pacquiao Distribution Problems Say About the Future of Linear Television

Of the many, many issues with the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight, from the fact it took so long to be put together to the continued arguments even after the fight came together to Credential-gate to the lackluster nature of the fight itself, the one that I found to be most interesting, and most telling both of the […]

Wednesday, January 28 TV Ratings Report

Time for another ratings post proof-of-concept! This time I’m wading into the general ratings world. Ever since The Futon Critic stopped doing final ratings last year, we don’t have a site that lists broadcast and cable shows alongside each other, and we’ve never had them listed on a time-period basis like this so we can […]

Ensuring a #CommActUpdate for the Twenty-First Century

The Republican-controlled House Energy and Commerce Committee has been collecting input for a comprehensive update of the Communications Act for over a year now, with an eye towards a “technology-neutral” law that avoids placing different technologies in different regulatory “silos” and instead treats equivalent technologies equivalently. Towards that end, it has been issuing a series […]

SlingTV Isn’t Breaking Up the Cable Bundle. It’s Preserving It.

Dish took the wraps off its long-in-the-works Internet-delivered TV service today, long known as “NuTV” but now officially known as SlingTV. (Dish has a working relationship with the Slingbox company but there is no other relationship between SlingTV and Slingbox.) For $20 a month you can sign up for a dozen channels from Disney, Turner, […]

How Broadcast TV is Like a Bus

[Free-to-air TV is] kind of like the horse, you know, the horse was good until we had the car…The age of broadcast TV will probably last until 2030. -Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, speaking in Mexico City on Monday while downplaying the significance of Nielsen rating Netflix and Amazon (something I’m not sure how it would […]

Cable Network Musical Chairs and TNA on Destination America (Huh?)

Discovery Communications has long been at the forefront of new technology; their HD Theater channel (which eventually became Velocity) was one of the first HD channels, and before that they were one of the first companies to take advantage of the explosion of channels digital cable opened up. In 1996, Discovery opened no fewer than […]

The Other Threat to Net Neutrality

The issue of net neutrality flared up again earlier this week when, after FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler introduced a new “hybrid” franken-proposal that ignored all the reasons why so many millions of comments supported Title II reclassification by only putting half the market (a half that had never been seen as a separate market before) […]

Against the Tyranny of Nielsen

Last year, Nielsen announced that it would be adding “broadband-only homes” to its television ratings sample and viewing universe. This category consisted of people that not only didn’t subscribe to cable television, but didn’t even have an antenna to watch broadcast television, and thus couldn’t watch any programming on any platform that Nielsen normally measures, […]

What is the Sports Blackout Rule the FCC Just Repealed?

On Tuesday the FCC voted unanimously to repeal its 40-year-old sports blackout rule, a move that means a lot less than its coverage in the media has made it look like. This is not, in itself, the rule that prohibits the broadcasting of NFL games that don’t sell out or the rule that frustrates MLB […]

When and how did broadcast television lose the battle to cable?

What is the most popular programming on television this summer? What network is most attracting viewers’ attention with all the choices out there? Is it NBC on the back of its hit reality show America’s Got Talent? Is it CBS and its collection of shows popular with all ages, from Big Brother to 60 Minutes? […]