Report: Cost of cable channels doesn't match popularity | Media Bureau JSA notice shows "disregard for process," lawmakers say | NAB: FCC's JSA changes will harm diversity, local content
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March 14, 2014
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Report: Cost of cable channels doesn't match popularity
ESPN is the most expensive cable network -- it costs providers an average of $5.54 per subscriber per month -- but the sports channel ranks third in popularity, according to data from SNL Kagan. And four of the 10 priciest channels -- NFL Network, ESPN2, Nickelodeon and CNN -- don't even rank among the 10 most-watched networks. TheWrap.com (3/13)
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Business & Industry Report
Media Bureau JSA notice shows "disregard for process," lawmakers say
The decision by the Federal Communications Commission's Media Bureau to examine joint-sales and shared-services agreements on an individual basis "not only flies in the face of reform, it reveals an alarming disregard for process," according to Reps. Greg Walden, R-Ore., and Fred Upton, R-Mich. "This effort raises questions about Chairman [Tom] Wheeler's stated commitment to process reform," they said in a statement. "This end-run around the full commission is a step back for transparency and reform, and sadly, consumers are the ones who stand to lose the most." Broadcasting & Cable (3/13), Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model)/Company Town blog (3/13)
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NAB: FCC's JSA changes will harm diversity, local content
The Federal Communications Commission's "arbitrary and capricious" moves to alter the rules for joint-sales agreements will make it more difficult for broadcasters to "foster localism and diversity," NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith said. The changes proposed by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler "use a sledgehammer where a scalpel, if anything, is far more appropriate," said Smith, who added it was "manifestly unfair" to prohibit TV outlet collaborations while allowing cable consolidation. Deadline.com (3/13)
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Technology
Technology suppliers feel pinch from spectrum auction unknowns
Uncertainties over the timing of the federal incentive spectrum auction and a nearly yearlong hold on construction permits for new antennas and other changes are affecting vendors that supply RF technology and antennas. Electronics Research Inc., a major vendor of RF components and related technology, recently let go 22 workers, or nearly 20% of its roster. "We have told the [Federal Communications Commission] that this process is taking a toll on the very RF vendors that will be needed to make the repack a reality," said Rick Kaplan, NAB's executive vice president of strategic planning. TVNewsCheck (free registration) (3/13)
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Broadcast Programming
Small-market TV station in Mich. plans first newscasts
WJMN-TV, the CBS affiliate in Marquette, Mich., on April 21 will begin airing its own local newscasts for the first time. The Nexstar-owned station is planning 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. broadcasts from a new facility. "Nexstar and our Marquette station operations are dedicated to supporting the evolving needs and interests of our local viewing communities, hometown businesses and public organizations," said Joseph Denk, vice president and general manager at WJMN and WFRV-TV in Green Bay, Wis. Broadcasting & Cable (3/13)
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Related Industry News
Liberty Media drops Sirius XM plan, will create tracking stocks
Liberty Media has dropped its plans to purchase the entirety of Sirius XM, and later in 2014 will divide its holdings into two tracking stocks. Liberty Broadband Group will include its minority investments in Charter Communications and Time Warner Cable. The other group will be called Liberty Media Group, which will house its Sirius XM holdings and other media investments. Reuters (3/14), Multichannel News (3/13)
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People & Personalities
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Joel Brinkley is dead at 61
Joel Brinkley, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and the author of "Defining Vision," about the advent of HDTV, died on Tuesday in Washington, D.C. He was 61. Brinkley was the son of the longtime network news anchor David Brinkley. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (3/13)
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Univision's Jorge Ramos to receive NAB's Distinguished Service Award
NAB has named veteran Univision news anchor Jorge Ramos as this year's recipient of its Distinguished Service Award. Ramos will receive the award on April 7 at the NAB Show in Las Vegas. "For nearly 30 years, Jorge Ramos has been one of America's leading broadcast journalists, establishing himself as one of the most recognized and respected figures in Hispanic television," said NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith. Variety (3/13)
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NAB News
Radio managers at NAB Show: Attend Digital Strategies Exchange for Radio
Digital Strategies Exchange for Radio (DSX4r), presented by NAB Labs, is a one-day workshop held Wednesday, April 9, within the NAB Show's Broadcast Management Conference. It focuses on the many digital technologies affecting radio broadcasting today and provides recommendations for non-technical managers on how to best leverage them to local radio's advantage. Digital topics will include the connected car/digital dashboard, audience measurement, branding, best practices, hiring and Hybrid Radio. Plus, radio futurist James Cridland, Media UK, will provide a special presentation on successful digital strategies from around the world.
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On-demand webcast series for radio broadcasters: Secure more digital dollars
BIA/Kelsey projects digital ad spending will top 20% of an advertiser's total advertising budget later this year and more than 27% by 2017. Is your station ready to offer digital solutions? The NAB Virtual Academy for Radio: Delving Deep into Digital webcast series is a three-part, on-demand webcast series that delivers actionable content and digital solutions you can put to use right now. Read more.
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Legislative & Regulatory
FAA regulations on drone use are in limbo
The use of an unmanned drone to capture footage from a deadly explosion in New York offers an example of how the devices can be both a useful tool as well as a potential obstacle for emergency personnel. The use of drones in airspace under 400 or 700 feet is currently unregulated after a judge said Federal Aviation Administration guidelines don't apply to them. The FAA has appealed the ruling. GigaOm (3/13)
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SmartQuote
Joys divided are increased."
-- Josiah Gilbert Holland,
American writer
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