Exclusives

  • TVN Tech: Oregon State Merges Media In New Facility

    A $3.1 million, 14,000-square-foot media center allows students at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Ore., to get hands-on experience producing content for television, FM radio, the Web, social media, newspaper and magazine.  This state-of-the-art operation could serve as a model for broadcasters looking to integrate media. Shown above is Control Room A. (Photo: Erik Utter Associates) More | Comments (2)
  • TVN Focus: Fritz: Time To Press FCC To Adopt ATSC 3.0

    Jerald Fritz of ONE Media says if broadcasters can submit a petition to the commission this summer, the FCC may be able to conduct a rulemaking and give its blessing late this year or early next. That means TV stations could be on the air with the standard sometime in 2017, he adds. More | Comments (15)
  • Jessell: Next-Gen TV Benefits Well Worth The Cost

    Moving to ATSC 3.0 does not strike me as prohibitively expensive, except, perhaps, in the smallest TV markets where they may still be waiting to upgrade to HD in the newsroom. And there are ways to mitigate the expense. But in the long run, the myriad financial benefits from the new standard should be evident to those broadcasters who intend to stay in business for the foreseeable future. More | Comments (6)
  • TVN's Front Office: How We Profit From Each Other

    Whether it’s how you arrived at the position you hold today or how well your station or company performed in the last financial quarter, we all owe a lot of any success to the contributions made by other colleagues, our mentors and our business associates. MFM award winners exemplify this. Here are some of their suggestions for achieving excellence. More | Add comment
  • Diginets, Pt. 4: Is ATSC 3.0 Diginet Savior Or Competitor?

    There are two sides to the coin of next-gen TV standard ATSC 3.0 where diginets are concerned. If scores of stations opt to sell their spectrum in the incentive auction and abandon their diginet affiliations, stations that choose to keep their spectrum will have the additional capacity to accommodate at least some of them. However, the new standard will also give stations the ability to transmit IP data services on their excess spectrum. If those prove more lucrative, the diginets may be out of luck. This is the final part of a four-part special report on multicasting. Read the other stories here. More | Comments (2)

Special Reports

  • Multicasting 2015: A four-part examination of the revenue, programming and technology strategies of the diginet business.
  • TVN's FCC Watch: A quick briefing on FCC proceedings affecting TV broadcasters from communications attorneys David Oxenford and David O'Connor.
  • NAB 2015 HOT TOPICS: A multi-part series highlighting emerging tech trends in advance of the NAB Show. Topics include 4K cameras, IP newsgathering, editing workflow, IP workflow, audio developments, news production automation and master control automation.
  • NewsTECHForum 2014: Complete coverage of the second annual conference from TVNewsCheck and Sports Video Group
  • 2014—Year In Review: Revisit the year’s top developments in business, programming, journalism, technology, regulation and more.
  • Severe Weather 2014: A three-part look at the effects of social media on forecasting; a Q&A with the National Weather Service's Greg Carbin; and the latest on dual polarization radar.
  • Sales Management: A four-part look at the growing importance to stations of mobile viewing platforms; automated spot buying; improving digital sales operations; and a case study of a successful digital sales effort.
  • ENG 2013: A three-part examination of the state of the art in newsgathering tech, including bonded cellular, wireless mic issues and news vehicles.
  • THE TOP 30 TV STATION GROUPS: A plethora of mega-deals over the last 12 months has reordered TVNewsCheck's annual ranking. While the top three spots remained the same as last year — occupied by Fox, CBS and Sinclair — the rest of the top 10 is much changed with five companies gone through M&A activity.
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Latest News

Sat, May 30, 2015

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Bassler To Lead WWNY-WNYF Watertown
TVNewsCheck, May 29, 2015, 7:25 PM EDT
Veteran New York state broadcaster Ed Bassler will succeed the retiring Cathy Pircsuk as general manager of the CBS-Fox duopoly owned by United Communications Corp. Full Story | Add comment
closing bell
Dow Finishes Down 115, Nasdaq Loses 28
The Associated Press, May 29, 2015, 5:02 PM EDT
Stocks ended the week Friday lower following disappointing economic data showing that gross domestic product contracted 0.7% in the first quarter. That was worse than the government's initial estimate of growth of 0.2%. Full Story | Add comment
Jessell at Large
FCC Needs A Broadcast Attitude Adjustment
TVNewsCheck, May 29, 2015, 2:00 PM EDT
Instead of looking at broadcasting as a antiquated service that should be stripped for spectrum, the FCC needs to start seeing it for what it is — an elegantly simple and inexpensive means of keeping every citizen in the national conversation. Instead of imposing burdensome new rules or tightening up restrictive old rules, the FCC should look for ways to lighten the regulatory load and strengthen the medium. Full Story | Comments (8)
upfront 2015
Kids’ TV Ad Market Has Started To Move
Variety, May 29, 2015, 2:23 PM EDT
Madison Avenue is moving more quickly than anticipated to ensure pitches for electronic toys and holiday movies get put in front of the consumers most likely to be interested in them — kids and teens. Link | Add comment
Mark Gorman New CEO Of Matrix Solutions
TVNewsCheck, May 29, 2015, 10:29 AM EDT
The managing director of investor Main Line Equity Partners is tapped to succeed D.J. Cavanaugh as head of the CRM firm. Full Story | Add comment
'Today' Celebrates Back-To-Back Ratings Wins
CNN, May 29, 2015, 3:22 PM EDT
NBC's morning telecast has been mired in second place behind ABC's Good Morning America for years. But it's been quietly racking up victories recently — enough to put ABC on edge. In the key demographic for news advertisers, viewers 25-54, Today has beaten GMA for the past two weeks. This is significant because Today hasn't been No. 1 for two weeks in a row since the beginning of 2013. Link | Comments (1)
Brand Connections
overnights
Solid Bump For Fox’s ‘Bones’ On Thursday
Media Life, May 29, 2015, 12:18 PM EDT
Fox’s long-running drama Bones received a nice boost over its most recent original episode and helped the network finish first among viewers 18-49 on Thursday night. Bones posted a 1.2 overnight rating in the demo in its 8 p.m. timeslot, up 20% from a 1.0 from its most recent original episode two weeks ago, when it faced May sweeps competition. NBC's two-hour premiere of its new Charles Manson drama Aquarius posted a 1.0 rating in 18-49s from 9 to 11 p.m. Link | Add comment
How Scott Pelley Saved ‘CBS Evening News’
The Wrap, May 29, 2015, 12:08 PM EDT
ABC’s David Muir and NBC’s Brian Williams-less newscasts are currently battling for first place, but CBS is gaining on its rivals with a 21% jump in ratings over the past four years. Link | Comments (1)
'Empire' Season 2 Premiere Date Revealed
The Hollywood Reporter, May 29, 2015, 2:20 PM EDT
The writers behind the hip-hop drama announced today on Twitter that the new season will premiere on Sept. 23. The sophomore series will remain on Wednesdays at 9 p.m., as Fox announced earlier this month during its upfront presentation to advertisers. Link | Add comment
Univision Ups Deschapelles To Sales EVP
TVNewsCheck, May 29, 2015, 3:05 PM EDT
The Hispanic media company promotes Carlos Deschapelles to lead its network and digital sales teams across the country with a focus on sports sales. Full Story | Add comment
Unscripted TV Stripped Bare By 'UnReal'
The Associated Press, May 29, 2015, 2:15 PM EDT
Premiering Monday at 10 p.m. on Lifetime, UnReal arrives with what just might be perfect timing. The reality genre is cooling off (yet still embarrassing itself) as reality-based networks scramble to shore up their schedules with scripted dramas and comedies — the kind of fare that makes no false claims of authenticity and whose version of the truth is seen by all as invention. Full Story | Add comment
Netflix On The Same Side As The FCC
The New York Times, May 29, 2015, 2:47 PM EDT
Whatever the outcome of the latest proposed mergers and acquisitions in the media industry, a clear winner has already emerged, and it’s not even a party to any of the deals: Netflix, the streaming television pioneer. To many in the cable and broadband businesses, the invisible hand of Netflix has been apparent in the failed Comcast-Time Warner Cable combination; in likely restrictions on the merger between AT&T and DirecTV; and in the Obama administration’s embrace of net neutrality, to cite just three prominent examples. Link | Add comment
Brand Connections
Virtual Reality Named Next Mega Tech Theme
Bloomberg, May 29, 2015, 2:35 PM EDT
irtual reality headsets and content will be “the next mega tech theme” and a market worth more than $60 billion in a decade, according to Piper Jaffray Cos. “The diverse applications of VR in combination with accelerating technological improvements will lead to mainstream adoption over the next 10 years,” according to Piper Jaffray analysts including Gene Munster and Erinn Murphy. “Our optimism around the theme is based on consumers’ insatiable appetite for new tech experiences.” Link | Add comment
Programmatic To Account For $10B By 2019
Advertising Age, May 29, 2015, 6:11 AM EDT
Budgets allocated for programmatic TV buying, as well as the average cost of programmatic buys across platforms, are expected to surge over the next few years, according to the latest report from IPG Mediabrands' Magna Global. Link | Add comment
commentary by Tim Teeman
Why Daytime TV Is A Talk-Obsessed Hell
The Daily Beast, May 29, 2015, 8:10 AM EDT
Daytime soaps once ruled the mainstream networks, but they have been replaced by the far cheaper marketplace of opinion, quizzes and judgment as handed down in very brown courtrooms. For over 12 hours, from the opening bell of the morning shows to the showbiz gossip shows after the evening news, this wonderland of banter, bitching and shiny bazaar is populated by sunny smiles and Botoxed brows as rich, cosseted presenters vie to reassure they are just like the moms and stay-at-homes watching them. Link | Comments (2)
Charter-TWC May Force Cable Nets To Merge
The Street, May 29, 2015, 8:27 AM EDT
Charter Communication's proposed $55 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable would shrink the number of Internet and cable TV distributors in the U.S. to just four. With fewer outlets to sell their shows, cable networks would have less leverage to demand high fees and inclusion of some of their niche channels.The only solution may be for the networks to merge with one another — or be taken over by the cable and Internet distributors themselves. Link | Comments (9)
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KTXL Sacramento GM Jerry Del Core Leaving
The Sacramento Bee, May 29, 2015, 6:29 AM EDT
The head of Tribune's Fox affiliate in California's capital is leaving this week after almost five years at the station. In an email sent to co-workers on Wednesday, Del Core wrote: “A week ago my boss said she wanted to make a change in the station’s leadership." Link | Add comment
Fox’s Summer Play: Keeping It Real
Media Life, May 29, 2015, 6:17 AM EDT
The network is sticking largely with unscripted fare, including two new shows and a revival. Its major scripted effort, Wayward Pines, has drawn modest numbers. Link | Add comment
Sony Eyes Relaunching TriStar TV Banner
Deadline, May 29, 2015, 7:58 AM EDT
After being dormant for more than a decade, the TriStar Television brand is ready to make a comeback as a boutique production unit within Sony Pictures Television. It would be run by Suzanne Patmore Gibbs who would segue to the new position after a three-year stint as EVP of drama development at Sony Pictures Television. Link | Add comment
Comcast Under Fire For Pre-NBCU Violations
New York Post, May 29, 2015, 6:49 AM EDT
FCC and Justice Department officials have spent the past few weeks sifting through allegations that Comcast violated 2011 agreements that enabled the cable giant to buy NBCUniversal. Link | Add comment
Biblical Soap Enjoying Big Success In Brazil
The Associated Press, May 29, 2015, 6:04 AM EDT
Set in ancient Egypt and loosely based on the story of Moses, The Ten Commandments is billed as Brazil's first biblical soap opera. The soap is taking the country by storm. It's helped propel the Rede Record television network, owned by the founder of Brazil's main Pentecostal church, into a showdown with top broadcaster Globo, which for decades has had a lock on primetime soaps, known as novelas. Rede Record is now negotiating with Fox's Spanish-language channel, MundoFox, to sell the U.S. rights Full Story | Add comment
Summer TV Lineup Is Full On Cable
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, May 29, 2015, 7:20 AM EDT
Not every cable TV series has been scheduled, including FX’s returning comedy You’re the Worst, and there’s not enough space to include one-off TV movies like Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! (9 p.m. July 22). But here’s a pretty comprehensive list of what viewers can expect from cable networks over the next three months. Link | Add comment
Periscope Piles Up 380 Years Of Broadcasts
The Wrap, May 29, 2015, 8:01 AM EDT
Speaking Thursday at Re/code’s Code Conference, Periscope CEO Kayvon Beykpour said that people using the live-streaming app have created 380 years’ worth of broadcasts in the eight weeks since Periscope launched. A big question: As live-streaming apps gain mainstream popularity, will binge watchers still have time for traditional TV? Link | Add comment

More News

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WJXT Jacksonville Expands Its News Staff
TVNewsCheck, May 29, 2015, 7:47 PM EDT
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Dr. Sandy Goldberg Leaving WMAQ Chicago
Chicagoland Radio and Media, May 29, 2015, 4:13 PM EDT
Bybee Named KHBS-KHOG Chief Meteorologist
May 29, 2015, 3:15 PM EDT
NBC Mum On Whether It Will Share 'Aquarius' Data
Vulture, May 29, 2015, 2:43 PM EDT
dma 93 (Baton Rouge, LA)
WBRZ Reporter Arrested For Interfering With Police
The Advocate, May 29, 2015, 2:41 PM EDT
EW.com To Move Behind Metered Paywall
MediaPost, May 29, 2015, 2:30 PM EDT
Fox News Turns Greg Gutfeld Loose In Sun. Experiment
Variety, May 29, 2015, 2:28 PM EDT
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WAGA Atlanta Wins ‘Set Of The Year’ Fan Vote
NewscastStudio, May 29, 2015, 8:14 AM EDT
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WDSU, Others Want Benson Proceedings Public
WDSU, May 29, 2015, 7:50 AM EDT
HBO Now To Launch On Android This Summer
LostRemote, May 29, 2015, 7:44 AM EDT
CNN Celebrates 35 Years With A Blooper Reel
AJC.com, May 29, 2015, 7:25 AM EDT
GoPro Enters Virtual Reality With 16-Camera Rig
Los Angeles Times, May 29, 2015, 6:46 AM EDT
Market Share (DMA 3: Chicago)
WMAQ No. 1 In Late News In May Ratings
TVNewsCheck/Market Share, May 29, 2015, 6:39 AM EDT
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Austin Sweep: KXAN Wins Most News Slots
Austin 360, May 29, 2015, 6:19 AM EDT
FNC’s Legends & Lies Renewed For 2nd Season
TVNewser, May 29, 2015, 6:14 AM EDT
NBA Ratings Hit Three-Year High For ESPN
Variety, May 29, 2015, 6:12 AM EDT
Bob Saget Joining Netflix's 'Fuller House'
The Hollywood Reporter, May 29, 2015, 6:06 AM EDT
The GOP's Worst Enemy May Be Fox News
Politico, May 28, 2015, 5:47 PM EDT
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Ratings

Overnights, adults 18-49 for May 28, 2015
  • 1.
    1.2/5
  • 2.
    1.1/4
  • 3.
    1.0/4
  • 4.
    0.9/3
  • 5.
    0.9/3
  • 6.
    0.2/1
Source: Nielsen

Reviews

  • Brian Lowry

    Using the Manson Family two years before the Tate-LaBianca murders as a portal into 1960s counterculture, Aquarius is actually pretty groovy — a bit like a poor man’s LA Confidential in its revisionist look at the LAPD in a tumultuous earlier time. That makes NBC’s handling of this David Duchovny vehicle puzzling: In making all the episodes available online after its premier, it’s either an interesting experiment, charitably speaking, or an unceremonious dumping of a project whose prospects are, admittedly, uncertain. While the dawning of Aquarius is hardly revolutionary, the show does kick off summer with a provocative, cable-like gamble.

  • Tim Goodman

    The new Netflix comedy series Grace and Frankie has the odd distinction of seeming like it doesn’t belong on Netflix but also paling in comparison to a show on Netflix’s main streaming rival, Amazon. You might find yourself asking why it exists at all. For starters, the Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin vehicle feels a lot more like a network show than something trying to stand out in the modern streaming world. That doesn’t necessarily mean that either Netflix or Amazon are distancing themselves from “regular television,” but there’s a familiarity to Grace and Frankie that seems rather dated.

  • Joanne Ostrow

    Two Jews walk into a bar .... There's no punchline. It's a silly, sentimental episode of FX's The Comedians in which Billy Crystal and Josh Gad sing karaoke in L.A.'s Little Tokyo and reminisce about aging, family and the nature of comedy. The generation gap provides the crux of a comedy collaboration by Crystal (old-school Borscht Belt) and Gad (youthful Broadway) that is by turns gently narcissistic, occasionally gross and musically inclined. The 13 episodes are fun, not groundbreaking, but slickly produced and accented with musical comedy. Like the two stars, the series is endearing, loud and desperate for attention, but ultimately a love letter to comedy and comedy history.

  • David Wiegand

    Kings, queens, presidents and dictators all have official histories, but power brokers, as they embody the precepts of Machiavelli, often operate in whole or part behind the scenes. Henry VIII takes second billing in PBS's Wolf Hall, the sprawling six-hour adaptation of two historical novels by Hilary Mantel. The miniseries is both brilliant and maddening and only really pays off in the final two episodes, after you’ve more or less figured out who the characters are, how they’re related to each other, and what the hell they are saying during endless, slow-moving conversations spoken, of course, in what to many Yanks is a foreign tongue: British English.

  • David Hinckley

    HBO's four-hour documentary Sinatra: All or Nothing at All captures all the singer's swash and buckle. It also reminds us, in a smart way, that Sinatra became one of the four or five best popular singers of the 20th century. In other words, director Alex Gibney hasn’t set out to make headlines by focusing on the flaws or the dark side of a life that had plenty of both.

  • Brian Lowry

    NBC describes American Odyssey as “Traffic-like,” which might explain the lack of inspiration permeating this multi-pronged drama, which, much like sibling USA’s Dig, hinges on a vast (and tedious) conspiracy. The intersecting threads involve a U.S. soldier in North Africa, a corporate lawyer and an Occupy-type political activist, each embroiled in a monstrous plot reaching up and into government. First-rate casting — including Anna Friel, Peter Facinelli and Treat Williams — can’t obscure the been-there, seen-that sensation, which doesn’t spur much curiosity about how these tentacles connect or offer much hope the show will last long enough to find out.

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