Closed Captioning started out as a simple favor to those less fortunate and has turned into an entitlement. It is now mandatory. But it costs a lot of money to put closed captioning into reruns of old sit-coms, and the TV stations will almost certainly pass the cost along to the advertisers, who will then pass the cost along to you, whether you watch TV or not.
Occasionally during a commercial break on TV, you may hear an announcement such as, "Closed captioning of this program is sponsored by...", followed by one or more commercials. I find it hard to believe that sponsors sign up for commercial time to pay for closed captioning, since closed captioning is required by the FCC, and the station has to provide it anyway.
The FCC says, "Closed captions provide a critical link to news, entertainment, and information for individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing, enabling these individuals to be part of the cultural mainstream of our society."*
That is simply nonsense. Television is not an essential part of life, or of civilized society. In fact our society was more civilized before television came along. In any event, a person can be "part of the cultural mainstream of our society" without watching television.
The FCC's Closed Captioning Rules: Definitions, requirements and complaint procedures.
The FCC's Closed Captioning Fact Sheet says, "Closed captioning is an assistive technology designed to provide access to television for persons who are deaf and hard of hearing."
Usually when you see the word "access" it is a code word for the implementation of special rights and privileges for a protected and politically sensitive minority. Everybody has access to television; sometimes a little too much access. If a person can't make sense of a television program without being able to hear the sound, that person isn't missing anything. I can see where it would be reasonable to require closed captioning on a tornado warning, but to require it on nearly 100% of all programs (no matter how old, unpopular, or self-explanatory) is the kind of foolishness one can expect from an overgrown government.
Brief History of Closed captioning: The engineering department of the Public Broadcasting System started to work on the [closed captioning] project in 1973, under contract to the Bureau of Education for the Handicapped of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW). The Federal Communications Commission set aside line 21 in 1976, for the transmission of closed captions in the United States.
The Editor says...
I should have known that the Department of HEW was in on this. For those of you too young to remember, HEW changed its name in 1979 to Health and Human Services, to get away from the well-deserved stigma of the name Welfare, and to spin off the Department of Education into its own enormous entity. The two departments devour a total of about $123 billion a year. But that's another topic.
Depictions of Moms in Traditional Roles Banned in Ads. Cooking, cleaning mums will be banned in advertisements across the UK from next year, following a study which claimed traditional gender roles are "harmful and outdated". The decision to tighten regulation was announced by the Committees of Advertising Practice (CAP) this week, after a report published in summer identified gender stereotypes in adverts as a driver of inequality between men and women. "Wherever they appear or are reinforced, gender stereotypes can lead to mental, physical and social harm which can limit the potential of groups and individuals," the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) alleged in its study.
The Editor says...
A depiction of traditional gender roles, the way normal people live their customary lives and the way things are supposed to be is not a stereotype. It may be ordinary, dull and routine, but it is not misleading. Those who are constantly "pushing the envelope" to sell a product, a book, or a TV show are the only ones who find traditional behavior offensive. Permit me to elaborate: Advertising is constantly being used as propaganda. In every TV commercial, the women are smart and the men are dumb. The women are the problem solvers, and the men are the ones who brought the problem into the house. The women are the savvy shoppers, and the men are helpless buffoons. In some commercials, life is wonderful for Mom and the kids, because there's no man in sight. Nearly everything you see in television advertising depicts an inversion of the truth.
DOJ moves to require services in movie theaters for the blind and deaf. The Justice Department moved Friday [7/25/2014] to open up the nation's cinemas to the visually and hearing impaired with a slate of draft regulations requiring movie theaters to offer closed captioning and audio description technology. "This proposed rule will allow all Americans, including those with disabilities, to fully participate in the moviegoing experience," Attorney General Eric Holder said in unveiling the plan. The DOJ's bid to amend the Americans with Disabilities Act comes four years after the agency signaled plans to move forward with new regulations, drawing more than 1,000 public comments.
The Editor says...
It is an act of tyranny to make the owners of privately-owned businesses adapt to customers who shouldn't be there. It makes no sense for a deaf and blind man to go to a movie theater, just as it makes no sense for a paraplegic to go rock climbing or a blind person to go to a gun range and expect to be treated like everyone else. If people go places they shouldn't be, the owners of those places should not be penalized.
Watching the State of the Union speech with the sound muted:
The Silent SOTU. As I followed along via the closed captions, it was immediately apparent that Obama had a) nothing to say and b) was saying it very badly. Mercifully spared his characteristic drone, the predictable cadences and the sine-wave rise and fall of his voice, all a viewer was left with were the president's policy prescriptions, often hilariously rendered into fractured English in the caption crawl, and his robotic body language; he appeared more akin to a hologram than a human being. [...] Finally, there is this: At least half the country simply does not believe the man has the best interests of the union at heart.
Newest disabled right: audio TV captioning. The FCC has proposed that TV networks be compelled to provide at least four hours of programming a week with "secondary audio" descriptions of filmed action in hopes of giving blind viewers an "equivalent experience" to what sighted viewers are getting.
The Editor says...
Common sense should tell you that "blind viewers" will never have an "equivalent experience" sitting in front of a TV, no matter what provisions are made by the broadcasters.
Timeline of Closed Captioning Development. Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 enacted, requiring all federally funded public service announcements to be closed captioned.
This kind of incrementalism only goes one direction. First it's applied to television, then to movies in theaters, and before long it will be required on DVDs, video games, and anything that can be shown on a television.
Deaf group files lawsuit against movie theaters. Invoking the Americans with Disabilities Act, eight hearing-impaired persons in Portland, Oregon have filed what aspires to the status of a national class action seeking to force three large cinema chains, Regal, Century, and Carmike, to install closed captioning devices for films in their theaters.
ADA Goes to the Movies. The movie-theater snob looks for big screens, high-end sound, legroom, and the newest innovation, stadium seating. If you're a movie-theater snob, chances are you worship at the altar of AMC theaters because they are the gold-standard of the cineplex world. So naturally, the Department of Justice is trying to put them out of business.
Movie theaters face suit over lack of captioned films. For most cinema buffs, silent movies went out with the Coolidge administration eight decades ago. But for film fans who are hard of hearing, today's theaters offer little beyond an indecipherable silence. Captioned showings remain rare, and existing technology that would allow attendees to read along at their seats is rarely used.
An ineffective substitute for parental supervision.
If you bring a television into your house, you know exactly what you're getting into. Whether your TV set has the V-Chip or not, if you see offensive programs on TV, it's only because you failed to push the POWER OFF button.Parents Have the Tools to Control TV Content. What's so troubling about calls for increased media regulation/censorship in the name of "protecting children" is that it ignores the fact parents have at their disposal many constructive alternatives to censorship.
TV is increasingly for old people. TV is increasingly for the old, and the Internet is for the young, according to new research by media analyst Michael Nathanson of Moffett Nathanson Research. The median age of a broadcast or cable television viewer during the 2013-2014 TV season was 44.4 years old, a 6 percent increase in age from four years earlier. Audiences for the major broadcast network shows are much older and aging even faster, with a median age of 53.9 years old, up 7 percent from four years ago.
Average TV Viewer Is 44 Years Old. [Scroll down] The windfall from cable television doesn't come from viewership, it comes from forcing a hundred-million plus households to purchase and pay for, and ultimately subsidize, dozens of channels they never watch. If you want Turner Classic Movies and Fox News, chances are you are forced to purchase a cable package that might include MSNBC or CNN or MTV. Not only is that [stuff] pumped into your home, you are subsidizing it. [...] Young people, thankfully, are the biggest threat to this racket. Thanks to Obama's terrible economy, which is hitting millenials hardest, young people just can't afford to pay $90 a month for TV. They can, though, afford $8 a month for Netflix.
Analyst: End of Bundled Cable Will Kill Over 80 Channels. Bundled cable is, in my opinion, one of the greatest hustles ever perpetuated against the American people. The worst part is how it works as a kind of affirmative-action program for left-wing programming that likely wouldn't survive in a world where we weren't forced to pay for channels we never watch. Chief among them, CNN, and MSNBC.
Bundled Cable Deathwatch: Ratings Plunge, Darwin Looms. You don't just cut your cable or satellite television cord all at once. There's a process involved where your viewing habits slowly migrate away from cable and towards alternative outlets like Netflix and Amazon Streaming. Then "it" happens. You realize you're paying $100 a month for a service you hardly watch (cable) and $10 a month for one you watch all the time (streaming).
Smart TVs keep dumbing down our living rooms. The living room's been something like a holy grail for electronics manufacturers for decades. It's the place where we spend hours every day sitting in front of our TVs, passively flipping channels and watching ads. Even as our smartphones and tablets vie for our attention, TV dominates: Americans still spend an average of 4 hours, 38 minutes a day watching the boob tube.
Women Serving in Combat Positions Is a Batty Idea. First off, if you truly want to eviscerate the enemy — namely Muslims — then I propose sending the most nerve grating and foul women Hollywood has to offer straight into hot zones as our forward armies. I'm a thinkin' starting off with Roseanne Barr, Joy Behar and Lisa Lampanelli as our first offensive. Talk about shock and awe! [...] Just send this unholy trinity in with matching Frederick's of Hollywood teddies juiced up on a pot of espresso and then have them confront hajji with their spurious insights, high-pitched, nasally voices and their unfunny comedic screeds, and our foes will shoot themselves in the face.
Is America an Idiocracy? In 1951, Ray Bradbury published Fahrenheit 451, a futuristic novel in which books are burned, and the citizenry occupies itself by watching hours of TV on wall-to-wall sets. Contrary to popular belief, Bradbury says Fahrenheit 451 wasn't about censorship or McCarthyism. It was about how TV undermines interest in reading and learning.Gallup Poll Finds All-Time Low in Public Confidence in TV News. [Bob] Schieffer and his colleagues will probably ignore the latest finding from Gallup's Confidence in Institutions Survey: television news has fallen to a 21 percent approval rating, a record low and just eight points higher than Congress.
Dish plans closure of 300 more Blockbuster stores. Dish Network Corp., which owns the Blockbuster chain of video rental stores, plans to close an additional 300 locations over the next few weeks on top of hundreds closed previously, according to news reports Monday [1/21/2013].9 Things to Say Goodbye To: [#7] Television. Revenues to the networks are down dramatically. Not just because of the economy. People are watching TV and movies streamed from their computers. And they're playing games and doing lots of other things that take up the time that used to be spent watching TV. Prime time shows have degenerated down to lower than the lowest common denominator.
Smart Televisions are highly susceptible to hacking by radio transmission. Researchers discover a massive security flaw in smart TV's that allow hackers to intercept data broadcasts, insert malicious code, and transform the TV into an antenna that infects all other Internet-connected devices in the household. Once the television is infected, it seeks out all other devices connected to the router. The attacks are untraceable as no source IP address or DNS server is ever presented, instead, hackers perform a classic man-in-the-middle attack using radio transmissions.Publicly Funded Leftism on Community Television. Community television began, like many bad ideas, in the 1960s, when self-styled "media activist" George Stoney and others began lobbying the FCC to mandate "public access" broadcasting. Stoney is described as "an early advocate of video as a tool for social change," who makes films "focusing on issues of social justice." In short, he's a leftist. ... Media activists demanded that this revenue be earmarked to support local public, educational and government television, known as PEG channels. FCC rulings in 1972 and 1974 led to the mandate that every community with 3,500 or more cable subscribers be offered four public access channels funded by access fees. The Supreme Court ruled in 1979 that the FCC had overstepped its authority, but by then it was too late...
How TV Killed the Republican Party's Family Values: Republicans are searching for an explanation as to why voters rejected their vision of America. The answer may be on their television screens, where an ever-expanding, bluer definition of family values makes their nostalgic idea of family values feel like a foreign world.
TV's 'air' pollution. From "Glee" to "Girls" to "Two and a Half Men," television has devolved into a vacuous wasteland where ordinary notions of morality, fidelity and decency are not just censored. They're a joke. TV shows present teenage virginity as a curse, human intelligence as a disease, and promiscuous sex as the norm, while average human attention spans are as alien as the Martian landscape.
"I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes."
The Toy Department. Watching a day of NFL football on TV this past Sunday, I saw more ads featuring casual sex and explicit violence than in my first 30 years of sports viewing combined. And yet we constantly hear from network broadcasters that sports are, after all, for the children.
TV Be Gone. I can understand that a sports bar or pub would have a TV for sports or something (though with the PC stuff some of the sportscasters spout on ESPN etc., I sometimes think I am watching the news), but why at every regular restaurant or even just in a store or doctor's office do I continually have to watch the mayhem and anxiety-producing news that I am going out to escape? Apparently I'm not alone, as others around the web have noticed the trend in recent years.
Unwanted televisions in restaurants too often cause conversation to tune out. Isn't it enough that we have cell phones to lure us away from a real, live conversation with our dinner partner? Now the squawk of a TV, too? I feel sorry for the chef. No one's paying attention to his creations. We're wolfing down the food, forks frozen in midair as we contemplate an episode of "CSI" or read the CNN crawler across the bottom of the screen.
Are There Too Many Televisions in Restaurants? Unless you're purposefully going to a restaurant to watch something — and again, sports bars seem to be an exception here — a TV can be noisy and intrusive. Thus, a TV in a bar area where patrons are waiting for a table might be different than a TV in the dining room where it would distract customers from their meals and their company.
Survey: People Are Watching Less TV Drifting to Other Devices. According to an article on Fox News, a survey by Accenture showed that the percentage of adults who watched TV fell by 23 percent from 2009 to 2011. The survey consisted of 10,000 participants from 10 countries, 1,000 of which were Americans. In 2009, 71% of the people questioned said they watched broadcast and cable TV.
Big Brother alert: Cameras in the cable box to monitor TV viewers. New technology would allow cable companies to peer directly into television watchers' homes and monitor viewing habits and reactions to product advertisements. The technology would come via the cable box, and at least one lawmaker on Capitol Hill is standing in opposition. Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Michael Capuano has introduced a bill, the We Are Watching You Act, to prohibit the technology on boxes and collection of information absent consumer permission.
The Tyrant in Your Television. When conservatives point to the obvious contradiction between Barack Obama's words and actions on spending, taxes, healthcare, the free market, Benghazi, and almost everything else, they merely reveal their naïvité. Obama, like [Bill] Clinton, is not a president, or even a human, in the old sense of those terms. He is a TV-president and a TV-human; his words need not match any reality beyond the media apparatus in which he "exists." He is to be judged according to whether his TV-presidency is interesting and entertaining. When the greater public gets bored of the show, they will switch channels and watch a different show.
The Media Threat to Democracy. People emulate what they see on television. Copycat killings are a good example. I believe the television media is responsible for more children being killed in schools than any other single factor. The widespread sexual deviancy in our society is another example of media influence. Once people see what is possible on television they believe it is possible, even acceptable, for them to do. When television began to show males wearing earrings and bandanas on their heads, and females sporting tattoos, we saw an immediate flood across the nation of males wearing earrings and bandannas and females getting inked. Monkey see, monkey do. Look around. Television tells society what is cool and acceptable. People emulate what they see on TV.
"The programming may be at its most primitive. But the technology has never been so advanced."
Shoot on Sight. The looped boredom might work as fare played on a re-education camp's closed-circuit screens. But educational television? A Learning Channel? Orwell laughs. If only it required barbed wires and guard towers to force people to tune in to Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, my faith in my fellow man might be reinvigorated. Alas, millions view willingly.
Top Television Shows Today Full of Garbage. A few years ago, network television became dominated by cheaply made reality TV shows and talent contests, sitcoms with hyperactive manic characters, and socially liberal themes. Television has always pushed the edge when it comes to socially progressive themes. [...] Now, with the exception of sports shows, it is impossible to sit down with children and watch one of the top ten television shows on network TV without exposing them to sex and profanity.
FCC mulls relaxing policy for TV indecency. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is considering making changes to its rules that bar TV and radio stations from airing indecent material. The commission on Monday issued a request for public comment on a proposal that would focus on penalizing only "egregious" cases. The proposal would be a shift away from the agency's past policy, adopted during the Bush administration, of penalizing even "fleeting expletives."
At the same time ...
Gov't Spends $2.4 Million to 'Improve the TV Diet of Preschool Children'. The federal government has spent $2.4 million to "improve the TV diet of preschool children," in grants administered through the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Seattle Children's Hospital has received $2,415,519 since 2008 for a study, entitled, "Media Impact on Preschool Behavior," which aims to steer children away from violent programming.
The Editor says...
Violence is bad, they say, but "fleeting expletives" are okay.
FCC chief sets new standard for passing the buck on indecency. Washington bureaucrats have long been known for buck passing, but [Julius] Genachowski has set a standard few D.C. paper-pushers could match. Genachowski has been FCC chief for four years, but he has failed during that time to assess even one penalty against the broadcast industry for indecent content.
Report: Broadcasters fail to disclose fundraising data. Two top campaign finance watchdogs filed complaints on Thursday with the Federal Communications Commission against 11 broadcast news stations claiming that they failed to disclose sponsor information for political advertisements. [...] After reviewing the stations' political files, the campaign transparency advocates found that the stations had not been following legally required disclosure rules and had failed to publicly list the candidate to which the ad refers, the issue, and the CEO or board of directors of the sponsor.
Relativism: America's new 'religion'. It is unlikely that many Americans would consciously choose a culture of coarseness, so why is American culture — TV, radio, films, books and advertising — so immersed in violence, indiscriminate sex, superficiality, pornography and ugliness? There is much talk about our freedom to choose, but we rarely hear that we can't choose the consequences of our choices. When relativism is adopted by a society, it does not produce beauty, but coarseness, if not as the desired outcome, then as an unintended consequence. One can see this occurring in America, in a descent to the lowest common denominator when it comes to art, music, literature, public discourse and entertainment.
The lucrative secret behind infomercials. Nothing good is on TV between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m., and for good reason. Nobody's trying. It's the time period known euphemistically in the media business as the "Post Late Fringe," and less euphemistically as the "Graveyard Slot." It's when networks and local TV affiliates sign off. They give up. They stop pretending that anyone important is watching and sell off their airtime — not just 30-second commercial spots, but entire 30-minute programming blocks — to sponsors. Those sponsors fill the left-for-dead airwaves with direct-response television (DRTV), better known as infomercials.
Feeding America: 'Public service' lies. "People say I'm a pretty good kid. Why, in a country as rich as America, should I have to go to bed hungry?" So goes the Feeding America campaign of "public-service announcements," which since 2008 have proven more popular than all the other Ad Council "Don't" campaigns (Don't start forest fires, Don't bully, Don't eat paint...) combined. Media programmers, especially at ad-poor online streaming outlets, run the spots continuously.Hollyork Nation: Denunciations of television have become as routine as breathing: the programming is crass, stupid, propagandistic, so bad that only an idiot would watch it yet everybody does. Actually things are worse. They are much worse. To see what is happening, start with what may be the crucial truth of our times: People will watch a screen. They will watch anything in preference to nothing, watch programs they don't really like, comedies so unfunny that only the laugh track tells them when to respond. The bright know that the fare is witless, that it is directed at fools. The ads irritate them. Yet they too watch. People cannot not watch television.
Which Network Will Win the Battle for Sharyl Attkisson? Media and particularly cable news has never been as polarized as it is today. It's also never been tilted more towards opinion and less toward objective reporting of hard news. As a result, trust in media has fallen to an all-time low. Reporters in particular are looked upon as dishonest brokers in the business, with Gallup showing only 20 percent of those polled finding journalists honest and ethical (that's 65 percent lower than nurses, 50 percent lower than doctors and engineers).
CBS, Colbert and Contempt for America. The number of people who watch a TV show stopped mattering years ago. If it did, Murder She Wrote, a show that had an older audience and high ratings, wouldn't have been canceled. Instead there's talk of rebooting it with younger multicultural leads in a different setting. Network television doesn't just fail to count older viewers; it tries to drive them away. A show with an older viewership is dead air. Advertisers have been pushed by ad agencies into an obsession with associating their product with a youthful brand. The demo rating, 18-49, is the only rating that matters. Viewers younger than that can still pay off. Just ask the CW. Older viewers however are unwanted.Reality of Austerity TV. [Scroll down] Since the inception of commercial television in the 1950s, TV executives have always known the taste of the American public has dictated the programming schedule. ... Satisfaction without limitation is always the driving force. Barnum understood that concept; Hitler recognized it, and every TV executive knows it as well.
Millions of children spend 32 hours a week in front of a screen. Millions of youngsters are missing out on traditional family lifestyles because they spend 32 hours every week using technology, it has been revealed. Children have their eyes glued to screens for more than four hours on a school day and six hours at the weekend. The staggering figures emerged after a study was carried out using thousands of UK parents.Television Addiction Is No Mere Metaphor. Perhaps the most ironic aspect of the struggle for survival is how easily organisms can be harmed by that which they desire. The trout is caught by the fisherman's lure, the mouse by cheese. But at least those creatures have the excuse that bait and cheese look like sustenance. Humans seldom have that consolation. The temptations that can disrupt their lives are often pure indulgences.
Pope Francis: Turn Off the TV During Dinner. Pope Francis has come up with 10 tips for a happier life, and one of them is to turn off the TV during dinner. In the interview with Argentine weekly Viva, the pontiff says staying plugged-in during meals stops families from communicating with each other. The pope also says that parents have to make time to play with their children and enjoy art and culture, according to a Catholic News Service translation of the interview.
Two year-old abandoned in favor of a widescreen TV. A two-year-old boy was rescued from a Kmart parking lot after he was abandoned by a shopper who left with a wide-screen TV — just one of the shocking incidents on a day of chaos on Black Friday yesterday.The side effects of binge television. A good television show writer understands that Oscar Wilde wasn't kidding when he said, "I can resist anything but temptation." Drama holds its audience in a perpetual state of anticipation, joyful in the knowledge that answers will be doled out only sparingly, that no resolution will ever be as powerful as the growing desire for it. Theater and film do this for a few hours; television can do it for years.
Shocker: Cable TV prices went up four times the rate of inflation. The Federal Communications Commission today issued a report on average cable TV prices in the US, and to the surprise of no one, it turns out they went up a lot. "Basic cable service prices increased by 6.5 percent [to $22.63] for the 12 months ending January 1, 2013. Expanded basic cable prices increased by 5.1 percent [to $64.41] for those 12 months, and at a compound average annual rate of 6.1 percent over the 18-year period from 1995-2013," the FCC said. The basic cable increase was four times the rate of inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the 12-month period, and substantially above inflation for the 1995-2013 measurement.
Most people say they'd abandon their cable company, if only they could. A survey of subscribers on the nation's biggest cable providers has found that more than half of Americans would abandon their cable provider if they felt they could. Cable rage is real, and here's the data to prove it.
Cable Subscriptions Plummet: Is This Cord-Cutting Critical Mass? Cable TV may still have tens of millions of subscribers in the U.S., but the writing is on the wall: Internet-based media is the future. Thanks to new streaming services from the likes of HBO, Amazon, Dish, and even some sports networks, consumers are abandoning their traditional pay TV packages. Even the word "cable" has taken on a negative connotation, conjuring up nests of coaxial wires and ethernet cords. Streaming services and set-top boxes feel refreshingly modern and wireless in comparison.
Aereo is shaking TV networks — all the way to the Supreme Court. In its three-year lifespan, Aereo has angered all the major TV networks, major-league sports, and the government. Here's a portrait of the scrappy company — and its audacious CEO — that could change American television as we know it.
Aereo Internet service vs. TV broadcasters: US Supreme Court to decide. The case involves a New York-based company that charges $8 a month to allow subscribers to watch broadcast television programs on their computer, tablet, or smart phone via the Internet. The company, Aereo, Inc., can keep its subscription price low in part because it pays nothing — zero — to the major broadcast companies for access to their programming. The broadcast companies aren't happy about it. They sued Aereo, claiming the little firm is stealing their copyright-protected programming and re-transmitting it to Aereo subscribers.
The Editor says...
Stealing? Broadcast stations spray their signals far and wide, hoping to reach as many viewers as possible. The broadcast stations should be delighted when their programs reach additional viewers.
U.S. Supreme Court Pulls the Plug on Aereo's Streaming TV Service. The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday dealt a potentially fatal blow to Aereo, an Internet service that allows customers to watch broadcast TV programs on mobile devices. Launched a year ago in New York and then extended to 10 other U.S. cities, it allows customers to watch over-the-air TV programs on a smartphone, tablet, or computer for as little as $8 a month. Selections can be viewed live or recorded for later viewing. The court found that Aereo violates federal copyright law by retransmitting copyrighted programs without paying a copyright fee.
Grand Rapids TV Viewers May Experience Blackouts. Retransmission disagreements have resulted in 84 television blackouts in the United States thus far this year, according to the American Television Alliance, an advocacy organization consisting of consumer groups, independent programmers and satellite and cable companies, that aims to ensure negotiations between broadcasters and local cable carriers don't result in blackouts.LCD TV shipments decline for first time ever. Got an LCD TV? Apparently, so does the rest of the world. The LCD flavor of flat-screen TVs are by far the most popular, making up 84% of the market, yet demand for them is waning.
The Al Jazeera Deal: How Al Gore Race-Baited His Way to a $100M Pay Day. One of America's great legal rackets is cable/satellite television, where somewhere around 100 million Americans pay for literally dozens of channels they never watch. As you well know, to do business with any cable/satellite provider means being forced into expensive tiers and/or packages that include channels we wouldn't watch for free. Because of this, we're not only forced into subsidizing junk; we're also subsidizing programming that works against our own political and cultural beliefs, like MSNBC, CNN, OWN, MTV, etc.
Americans Being Forced to Pay for Al Jazeera. Two weeks ago, Al Jazeera America launched, beaming into 48 million homes across the country. The media company that allowed Osama bin Laden to use it as a vehicle to communicate with jihadists around the world is now on your TV screen and you are paying for it. The network pushed its way onto basic cable packages with several providers. If you subscribe to Verizon, Comcast, Dish Network or DirecTV, you are forced to subsidize Al Jazeera's propaganda as part of your cable bill whether you like it or not.
CNET Reporter Resigns Over CBS' Censorship. One of the existential threats to broadcast and cable television is anything involving Internet streaming. We the People are slowly but surely getting used to the idea of watching what we want, when we want. And as people get used to this technology, the idea of flipping endlessly through expensive nothing-to-watch cable packages feels more outdated by the day.
The Golden Globes of Propaganda. When the Golden Globe awards telecast was over, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation proclaimed, "It was a great night for LGBT-inclusive television." They could have added: "We run the joint." Gay actor Matt Bomer thanked his "husband" and his surrogate sons when he won an award for HBO's Reagan-bashing AIDS drama "The Normal Heart." But the bigger celebration came with a best actor award to Jeffrey Tambor, who plays Mort, a 70-year-old father of three who decides he's a woman named Maura in a show called "Transparent," or literally, "Trans Parent," since his three adult children have to figure this whole scene out. The show "airs" on Amazon.com.
Being black or female or talented or intelligent isn't enough.
One in six BBC stars 'must be gay or lesbian or disabled' by 2020 says new staff-hiring guidelines at the corporation. One in six of all on-screen BBC roles must go to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender or disabled people by 2020, the corporation's new diversity targets state. In a bid to deter criticism that it has been failing to reflect its audience, the BBC has pledged that LGBT and disabled people will each make up eight percent of all on-air and on-screen roles.
Why Hollywood is dying. Creativity is a rare commodity in the studios today and one has to wonder if the alleged heavy use of drugs in LaLa land is behind this drought of originality. Everything coming out now is a remake of a former blockbuster only the characters' ethnicity or gender is changed to promote diversity. What this really connotes is that the studios believe that persons of color have nothing of interest so let's just stick their faces on something that worked before. [...] So the Ghostbusters are now all women. Whoopedoo — and having one of them be the stereotypical angry black woman is the typical mindset of the closeted racist misogyny of major studios. I'm not planning on seeing that movie so that I don't know if they will inject the ubiquitous gay character to promote its LGBT agenda as has been its wont for the past decade. That agenda has reached the level of hilarity for many as any person who's watched the TV program "Wayward Pines" knows. Introducing a gay character in a futuristic series that's about repopulating the human race makes absolutely no sense except for pure tokenism. There is nothing coming out in the films for senior citizens. The products are geared for either children; sophomoric young adults; or those with no taste at all.
Good News From TV Land. Shows like All In The Family, The Jeffersons and Good Times are on the drawing board for new versions. [...] It's not hard to imagine how this will go. All In The Family will feature a mixed race family, where the patriarch is a transgender white man. Gloria will be a gay male and Meathead will be a gender fluid lesbian, who enjoys lifting weights. The Jeffersons will be the same show, but not funny, because nothing has changed for black people since the '70's and that's not funny. Good Times will have Amy Schumer and Seth Rogan forced to live in a tenement owned by Donald Trump and managed by Richard Spencer.
Fake News and Fake Intelligence. Nielsen Holdings PLC is a global data mining corporation that has been in business since 1923. Its signature survey is in-home monitoring of television viewing habits. TV content, programming, and advertising dollars are a of function of Nielsen ratings and statistics. Well north of eighty percent all of domestic purchasing decisions are made by American women who watch television or use TV as a surrogate for child care. Nielsen is in the business of both monitoring and creating truth in the American marketplace. All so-called "Nielsen families" are aggressively recruited "volunteers," a demographic that has been led to believe that their household habits and tastes might be typical — or trend-setters. The Nielsen monitoring pitch appeals to a passive, vain feminine demographic, all of whom volunteer, with incentives, to provide Luxemburg corporate snoops with a veritable gold mine of personal and family behavioral data. Nielsen data is ubiquitous in entertainment, politics, marketing, advertising, retail, and manufacturing. How volunteer victims, monitored electronically, became a "typical" demographic is a question seldom asked or answered by statisticians.
2016 Was Bad Year for Prime-Time Network TV. [P]rime-time network television has sunk into irrelevance as viewers shun programming that fails to reflect any sense of Americana. The big four networks' ratings are all down double-digit percentages for the fall season. Premiere week for new shows in September was down 12 percent compared to last year, and nothing has happened since to reverse the decline. The top-rated prime-time show in November was CBS' "Big Bang Theory." The audience size would have made that program the 79th-ranked show 40 years ago, trailing such losers as "Mr. Belvedere."
Vizio Caught Spying on Customers Through Their TVs. We've been warned about bringing devices into our home that have cameras, microphones or WiFi that are connected to the outside world. Why? Because any one of the devices has the capability to collect data about us. And with advertisers and other organizations willing to pay for personal information, it's tempting for device makers to try to earn extra profits. The consumer electronics hardware business has become highly competitive with so many similar products that do much the same, so the manufacturers are trying to find ways to increase their revenue through software subscriptions or by collecting data that they can sell to others.
Google's Home TV ad makes Google Home systems go crazy. Google Home is the search engine's answer to Amazon's Echo system, in which users get it to respond by asking questions or giving orders starting with the name "Alexa." Both are home systems that are dormant until a user calls out their name. Then they perform any number of functions — from playing a musical selection to turning on or off the lights.
Death spiral TV news lies to fool advertisers. The Wall Street Journal just accused major television networks of using deception to goose ratings that include deliberately misspelling the names of the news shows. Sounds like fraud to me. Unlike their cable brethren, the broadcast newsers seem to be losing customers. I say seem because we have no way of telling as they have so gamed the ratings system that no honest person can say how many people watch them.
In TV Ratings Game, Networks Try to Dissguys Bad Newz from Nielsen. Boosting TV ratings is easy for networks that don't mind playing dumb. In a game largely sanctioned by TV-ratings firm Nielsen, television networks try to hide their shows' poor performances on any given night by forgetting how to spell. That explains the appearance of "NBC Nitely News," [...]
CBS rejects pro-flag, anti-Kaepernick 'Just Stand' Super Bowl ad. A veteran-owned apparel company's pro-flag Super Bowl TV ad that punches back at Nike's promotion of Colin Kaepernick and his national anthem protests has been rejected by CBS. According to the firm, Nine Line Apparel, CBS was apparently not satisfied the firm could pay for the 45-second ad, despite having annual revenues of$25 million. A spokesman for Nine Line charged that CBS didn't like the ad's content.
WaPo Super Bowl ad demonstrates exactly what's wrong with the media. The Washington Post sponsored an ad during the Super Bowl that may have been the most pretentious, the most exaggerated paean to the religion of journalism ever created. They call it "Democracy dies in darkness," and it features a grand, sweeping musical score and actor Tom Hanks seriously intoning the importance, the necessity, and the need to worship journalism. [...] The Washington Post spent millions on this ad, and the reviews were decidedly mixed.
Cutting the cord: A guide to watching your TV shows without cable. Had it with the rising costs, hidden fees, contracts, customer service issues, and the nickel and dime-ing of cable TV? You're not alone. According to a report in Variety, more than 33 million people have cut the cord on traditional pay TV. This year, that number is expected to grow to more than 39 million.
This Is The Reason Smart TVs Are So Cheap. A significant reason why a smart TV, or perhaps a new 65-inch 4K smart TV with HDR capability, can be purchased for about $500, is because some manufacturers are harvesting data from users. [...] Vizio TVs, have the ability, with user opt-in, track anything that is on the TV, what the company calls "automatic content recognition." That data used to be sold off to third-party data aggregators, but after the Federal Trade Commission and New Jersey slapped the company with a multi-million dollar fine in 2017. Legal documents from the case reportedly show that Vizio installed software on 11 million smart TVs to track viewing habits without consumers' knowledge. Now, Vizio keeps the data but sells targeted advertising in a platform model like Google and Facebook.
Survey: Americans Spend Nearly Half Their Waking Hours Looking At Screens. More specifically, the survey found that 42% of the time Americans are awake, their eyes are fixated on a television, smartphone, computer, tablet, or other device. Supposing the average American slept eight hours a night (not even close to the case for most adults), the researchers calculated that people spend about six hours and 43 minutes a day staring at a screen.
A complete inversion of reality:
'Murphy Brown' features reporter beaten by 'sea' of MAGA-hat wearing thugs at 'Trump' rally. CBS' "Murphy Brown" took its jabs at the Trump administration to a new level this week with a story in which character Frank Fontana is beaten by a mob of MAGA-hat wearing thugs. Rumors swirled this week that Candice Bergen's show would not be renewed after its initial batch of 13 episodes aired, but the creators' liberal stance was further solidified on Thursday with a story called "Beat the Press."
The Editor says...
Tea Party people and right-wingers wearing MAGA hats are usually the victims of political violence in this country, not the instigators and perpetrators of it. No one other than a poorly-educated left-wing activist at CBS would believe otherwise. News reporters are only rarely the targets of physical violence, and in all the cases that I can recall offhand, when reporters have been exposed to criminal violence, it has been connected to theft, domestic violence, or the random acts of homeless people who should have been locked up.
Report: Anti-Trump 'Murphy Brown' Reboot Cancelled After One Season. CBS is cutting bait with its re-booted, President Trump-bashing sitcom, Murphy Brown, announcing it will not renew the show after its first 13 episodes, according to reports. The Candice Bergan-fronted comedy came back with much fanfare as a full-throated attack on President Donald Trump, but lackluster ratings dogged the show from its very first episode.
Are You Ready to Stop Watching the Never-Ending Commercial? On television, the real commercial is found in the programs more than the nominal commercial breaks. Network programs plug socialized medicine, either with some fawning reference to the Canadian system or complaints about prescription drug prices and "big pharma." For nearly two decades, virtually every prime-time show has featured gay characters politicizing their orientation. Police and legal shows advocate increased immigration while claiming that unlimited immigration is somehow the law. Popular sitcoms feature promiscuity while ridiculing those who fail to be promiscuous. The point is not simply that television features bad things. We already knew that. The point is that television programs are little more than commercials for promiscuity, unfettered immigration, socialized medicine, gay rights, and the rest of the Democrat agenda. Movies are not at all different. Every movie (with a few marginalized exceptions) revises history in some way and serves as a Democrat campaign commercial. The Academy Awards are today's equivalent of Orwell's "two minutes hate" against Republican politicians.
Worst Quarter Ever For Cable/Satellite TV Providers. Contrary to suggestions of a slow-down, the number of Americans severing their ties to cable and satellite TV soared to the largest number ever during the third quarter this year. For the first time satellite and cable TV providers lost more than a million subscribers from July through September this year. To be exact, they lost 1.1 million customers. Which is a lot of of monthly fees gone poof!
Why liberals laughed at a wounded veteran. Conservatives rightly are getting on the case of Peter Michael Davidson of the SNL political hour for mocking a Navy SEAL's war wound. The target was Texas congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw whose only crime is being a Republican. Davidson is now as repulsive as Samantha Bee, who called the First Daughter the C-word, and Stephen Colbert, who called the president a homophobic slur. No one lost their job. They said this in scripted, taped remarks. That means they spoke for their network and its corporate owner.
GLAAD: the number of LGBTQ series regulars on TV is at an all-time high. For the past several years, the entertainment industry has been the subject of many a conversation about representation and inclusion of women, people of color, and LGBTQ+ individuals onscreen. [...] It's a growth that comes in concurrence with a 4 percent increase over last year in series regular characters on broadcast television who are people of color and, within that statistic, an overall increase in racial diversity as characters of all ethnicities have become more visible in mainstream media.
American Music Awards ratings plunge 29 percent with politically charged show. The politically charged 2018 American Music Awards produced dismal viewership, setting an all-time low rating for the annual special. According to Variety, Tuesday night's "American Music Awards" on ABC earned a disappointing 1.8 rating among the key demo of adults age 18-49 with 6.5 million total viewers, according to the Hollywood trade publication. The total was down 25 percent compared to its 2.4 demo rating in 2017.
Emmy Awards drop 11 percent from last year with a record low of 10.2 million viewers. The 70th Primetime Emmy Awards on Monday night produced the show's smallest audience in its history. The final numbers from Nielsen were revealed on Tuesday afternoon and show the annual awards ceremony saw a sharp decline in viewers and a dip in its targeted demographic. A little over 10 million people tuned in to the three-hour Monday night [9/17/2018] show, an 11 percent drop from last year's 11.8 million viewers.
The Emmys Telecast Was a Cringe-Worthy, Tone-Deaf Embarrassment. "Let's give ourselves a hand!" He really said that! It made me laugh. He wanted accolades for this disaster. It made me laugh — and wonder just how tone-deaf this award show could possibly be. The answer presented itself, repeatedly, and with much unearned self-congratulation: very tone-deaf. He is chairman of the Television Academy Hayma Washington, who came on stage right before the last act of a miserable Emmy Awards telecast, and repeated the night's running theme: This, the 70th Emmy Awards, features the most diverse and inclusive group of nominees ever. Yet the tepid response he received — he had to literally cajole the crowd to applaud itself, a rarity for this industry — underscored everything woefully misguided about this Colin Jost and Michael Che-hosted outing, perhaps the worst-produced award show since James Franco and Anne Hathaway co-hosted the Oscars.
The Top 50 Liberal Media Bias Examples. [#46] TV's anti-conservative attacks: Episodic television is no different than Hollywood in its attacks on the right. For a few examples: NCIS featured a story about terrorists not long ago. Of course, the terrorists were white people mad at US government failures, not Muslims. The series Medium created a character evoking comparisons to the law-and-order Sheriff Joe Arpiao in Arizona. Only the TV show's version was a child rapist and murderer — naturally. This is not to mention the bias belched out by the chicks on The View on a daily basis.
How Smart TVs in Millions of U.S. Homes Track More Than What's On Tonight. The growing concern over online data and user privacy has been focused on tech giants like Facebook and devices like smartphones. But people's data is also increasingly being vacuumed right out of their living rooms via their televisions, sometimes without their knowledge. In recent years, data companies have harnessed new technology to immediately identify what people are watching on internet-connected TVs, then using that information to send targeted advertisements to other devices in their homes. Marketers, forever hungry to get their products in front of the people most likely to buy them, have eagerly embraced such practices. But the companies watching what people watch have also faced scrutiny from regulators and privacy advocates over how transparent they are being with users.
Michael Che's Lambaste Of Substituting Politics For Comedy Is Spot-On. The hottest trend in stand-up comedy is to fill as much time as possible on a political soapbox, and perform no actual comedy. The new rock-star comedians praised by progressive millennials do not make uniquely funny observations about life, but reveal deeply personal tragedies to their audience, usually with a strong call to social action. They seem to have one, strong characteristic in common: They are not funny. [...] Late-night comedy shows have elected themselves the educators of the masses.
CW's 'Supergirl' Casts Transgender Rights Activist as First Trans TV Superhero. The CW network's Supergirl has announced the casting of transgender rights activist Nicole Maines to play a super-powered hero in the series upcoming fourth season. Reports of the search for an actor to portray a transgender character broke in May, but now word has emerged that Maines has been cast as Nia Nal, a hero named "The Dreamer." Nal will have the power to sense the future, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Trump-Bashing Rants By Late-Night 'Comics' Now Get Treated As Real News. If you rely on the nation's top news sites to determine what was really important about the Trump-Putin Helsinki summit, the answer would be: How did Trump-hating late-night talk-show hosts react? We are not kidding. This is how low the mainstream press has sunk.
Will Upcoming Emmy Awards Double as Resistance TV? Awards shows have always had an emotional element to the winners and losers. The best movie, TV show, song, or production should snare the highest awards, but other factors can't help but creep in. When an actor is in his or her golden years, for example, they have a sentimental edge over the competition. Or, as in the case of this year's Best Actor Oscar winner Gary Oldman, a legacy of rock solid performances prior to becoming Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour. Today, there's another factor threatening to overwhelm the usual standards for the best of the best. How does the nominee factor into The Resistance?
Americans are losing confidence in many things, but not these three. Americans, it seems, are growing increasingly dubious, skeptical, even cynical about many of their once-hallowed institutions. These include especially Congress. But any such disapproval list also contains TV news, newspapers, unions, public schools and even the criminal justice system. Only two institutions — the military and small business — hold an overwhelming net positive opinion in the minds of Americans. The volunteer military has by far the most public confidence — 94 percent with a great deal or some confidence in it.
When you finish this editorial, pick up a book. Pleasure reading is at an all-time low, a new study shows, and the culprit is television. More TV and less reading leaves people less imaginative, less informed, and less fully alive. The trend needs to reverse.
Keep the Kids Away from 'Drag Tots' — This Cartoon Is Coming Soon. A new show proves the need for parents to monitor carefully what programs their little ones are watching: On June 28, a cartoon called "Drag Tots" is premiering on World of Wonder network, and it is exactly what the title conveys — a cartoon about baby drag queens. Not only that, but these are baby drag queens with a message: The president is bad. "In the show's first trailer ... a voiceover warns that the world is 'on the brink of chaos' because of President Donald Trump and his controversial administration," notes The Hollywood Reporter. "After a clip is shown of Trump touting his plan to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, the voiceover suggests a quick fix to all of today's political unrest: 'baby drag queens.'"
Broadcasters Hope To Counter Ad Skipping By Replacing Ads With Short 'Inspirational Videos'. The cable & broadcast industry has gone to some pretty absurd lengths to avoid having to adapt to the cord cutting era. As ad-skipping DVRs started to become popular, the industry's response wasn't to embrace natural evolution, it was to file a bunch of lawsuits and creatively harass companies that were trying to give consumers what they wanted. Similarly, as cord cutting has grown thanks to sky-high prices and ad break fatigue, the industry's overall response was to first raise prices like it was going out of fashion, then try to speed up or edit down programs in the hopes of shoving more ads into each viewing hour.
A New Low for Dr. Oz. It was Cicero who wondered how one fortuneteller could pass another in the street and keep a straight face. But that's Dr. Oz's main qualification — he keeps a straight face no matter what he's holding up to the camera. What's next? I can just see this credentialed hack earnestly pointing at maps of the soles of the feet to enlighten the masses about reflexology, or extolling the diagnostic benefits of the bumps on the skull. What am I saying — he's probably done those already, and if he hasn't, it's not for lack of shame.
Netflix Approval Plummets Among Republicans Amid Obama Production Deal, Susan Rice Board Appointment. Republican's approval of the internet streaming giant Netflix has dropped amid the company's recent embrace of Susan Rice and Barack Obama, according to polling data obtained by Variety. A survey by the research firm YouGov found that Netflix's positive impression rating with Republicans fell by 16 percent since the beginning of 2018. Meanwhile, the company's positive impression rating with Democrats has risen by 15 percent in the same period.
The Astonishing Silliness of CNN. [Scroll down] Over the course of two airports, CNN was everywhere. Before departure, CNN was rolling in our lunch restaurant. Next door, CNN was burbling in a convenience store. In the second airport, in the waiting area at the gate, CNN was not only surrounding me on several screens, but the sound was also piped in. [...] Join with me, America, and demand the channel be changed. Or even better, to turn the TVs completely off, with the exception of major sporting events and occasional soothing nature specials.
Fox Moves to Revive Tim Allen Comedy Series 'Last Man Standing'. The Tim Allen-fronted blue-collar comedy Last Man Standing may make Fox Broadcasting Co. its new network home after ABC abruptly canceled the successful series last year.
NBC took a $69M chance on Megyn Kelly and it looks like a failure. NBC poured millions of dollars into "Megyn Kelly Today" and, in return, they've been rewarded with a massive drop in viewership. The Peacock network poached Kelly from Fox last year, enticing her from the conservative flagship network with a three-year, $69 million contract, according to the Wall Street Journal. But Kelly's introduction to NBC, premiering at the 9 a.m. hour in September, was met with almost immediate controversy — a feud with Jane Fonda that the morning show host dragged out for months — and she never drew the viewership that the network was looking for. Her Sunday night newsmagazine show was an even bigger disappointment and was quickly shrunk to sporadic primetime specials.
House of Canards: Netflix Drama Gets it Wrong on Gun Laws, NRA. March 4 saw the premiere of the fourth season of Netflix's hit political drama House of Cards. The show follows the machinations of House Majority Whip Frank Underwood as he ascends to the presidency and subsequently runs to stay in office. While the real-life Washington elite certainly have an unsettling fondness for the Machiavellian drama, its depiction of life inside the Beltway is highly stylized. This season this fact is made abundantly clear with the show's portrayal of federal gun laws and NRA.
The Glades, "Iron Pipeline": it's always the awkward ones. Guns are bad and only police personnel should own them; that is what the episode teaches.
Easy as ABC. The American Broadcasting Company has just discovered what George Orwell proclaimed seven decades ago: "To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle." What ABC finally realized was that about 50 percent of the country voted for Donald Trump. No network can afford to lose half its audience. That way lies self-parody and selfdestruction. Consider ESPN, with its 24/7 politicizing of sport and, as a result, a catastrophic loss of subscribers — down 8 percent last year and falling. ABC News is still in attack mode when it comes to the Trump presidency, but its programming department is too canny to go down that increasingly crowded highway.
Why Megyn Kelly's NBC show is a flop. After making a name for herself at Fox News, in large part thanks to her headline-making feud with Donald Trump, Megyn Kelly was courted by NBC and offered a reported $23 million per year to bring her star power to the Peacock Network. This made her the highest-paid anchor at NBC following Matt Lauer's departure, but unfortunately, courting Kelly may not have been a smart investment. Her first attempt at success, a Sunday night news magazine dubbed Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly, debuted in June 2017 and soon proved to be a flop. Come September, the network moved her to a daily talk show-style gig during the 9 a.m. slot of Today. That series, Megyn Kelly Today, once again failed to bring in viewers and ratings plummeted at lightning speed, fueled by countless controversies.
Hollywood stars, athletes driving away viewers with political activism, poll finds. Actors and athletes increasingly using their forums for political activism are turning off viewers, according to a newly released poll. A McLaughlin & Associates/Media Research Center survey released Wednesday [3/21/2018] found that 44 percent were less likely to watch sports and entertainment shows "because they have become too political." In addition, 75 percent said they watch sports and entertainment to escape from politics, and "do not want to be bombarded with partisan political messages." The poll of 1,000 likely voters comes with television ratings plummeting in the last year for high-profile sports and entertainment events.
Here's What Your Children Are Learning Today. Why on earth should kindergarten curricula include lessons on gender reassignments or anything to do with sex education? Have you watched what children are watching on television today? I remember when Saturday mornings would show cartoons on the local networks but cartoons are only available now on cable stations and are more inclined to represent liberal humor and social engineering rather than what appeals to children. The very young child watching the series "Back at the Barnyard" will assume male bulls have udders like cows. Although the character Lincoln on Nickelodeon's Loud family has ten sisters to watch over, his best friend also has two fathers. [...] Dora the Explorer is a big moneymaker for its creators but I've always thought that what we needed was Hispanic children learning English rather than the other way around plus is it really wise to encourage children that it's okay to befriend wild animals in the jungles?
We Don't Need No Stinking Ratings! I find it curious that a business that reportedly wants to sell a product, such as movies and television shows, will insult its customers as much as it can. The American public does not have a good opinion of the entrainment industry in general, but it does have a high regard for law enforcement officers (as well as EMT, firefighters, and other first responders). Seeing that the traditional networks are bleeding viewers to alternative sources of entertainment (e.g., Amazon Prime, Netflix, Hulu), they may want to be more concerned with providing a saleable product than with patting themselves on the back for evicting the sexual predators they coddled for generations.
At the Box Office and Voting Booth, Leftist Fantasies Bomb. [Scroll down] And then, there's CNN. The cable news outlet has spent the last fourteen months and more giving 24/7 coverage to a Russia-Trump conspiracy for which there is zero evidence, an epidemic of gun violence that does not exist, and what Brian Stelter, in a panic attack reminiscent of the little girl in Frobenius's anecdote, recently called "a rolling, ongoing, crisis" at the White House. The result? Like the Oscars, CNN's ratings have tanked.
Hollywood's Oscars Night Tanks as NRA Membership Skyrockets. Hollywood's biggest night of the year turned into one of the smallest as viewers refused to watch a conga line of virtue-signaling celebrities preen about politics. [...] So, we have people flocking to gun rights organizations and running from Hollywood. Why do you think that is? Hollywood doesn't want to face the reality that it's because people are fed up with condescension from celebrities who don't value Americans' civil rights.
Boycott the Oscars? Why Not Boycott Hollywood? It is very disconcerting to me, a former film buff to read past favorites indulge in hateful, spiteful and idiotic language that reveals the depth of their ignorance on politics. The biggest clue to their ignorance is that they actually supported Hillary Clinton, the worst candidate in ages, who had so much baggage she needed Pullman porters for security. The Oscars telecast will be next week, on March 4th, and will be hosted by nighttime host Jimmy Kimmel. He has demonstrated for the past few months that he can be extremely tearful about issues he hasn't bothered to research. He has been urged by the producers to tone down the politics but the star studded audience is filled with like-minded liberals, so it may be hard for him to avoid playing to them instead of the waning viewers. I remember when the Oscars were something to look forward to.
Sinking Ship: CNN Falls Below The Hallmark Channel In Prime Time Viewership. Cable news viewers are abandoning CNN in droves. Their 24/7 anti-Trump programming policy isn't working out so well, it seems. Even the Hallmark Channel is beating them in some areas. How embarrassing for them.
CNN Is Bleeding Primetime Audience Members At A Really Alarming Rate. The numbers that show the ratings for cable news networks are in, and while Fox News remains at the top of the food chain, CNN is currently limping along as it bleeds primetime viewers at such speeds, it's amazing it's not dead already. According to AdWeek, CNN managed to beat its closest competitor, MSNBC, in viewers during the day overall. But when people come home after work to watch the news, CNN suddenly found itself behind MSNBC in the ratings, never mind how miles ahead Fox News is.
Report: CNN to Lay Off up to 50 Employees After Missing Revenue Targets. Joe Pompeo writes at Vanity Fair that CNN, led by its president Jeff Zucker, will soon lay off dozens of employees — mostly from "several high-profile digital initiatives" — after the left-wing news network failed to reach revenue targets.
'Law & Order: SVU' Depicts Brutal Rape of Female Conservative Commentator. NBC's Law and Order: SVU has always been a reliable series to find liberal bias, whether it includes painting Christians as rape apologists or gender fluidity as "cool." But I think we were overdue for an episode that gives us a real, honest glimpse of what the show thinks of the right. Look no further than this week's episode title "Info Wars."
Two Basic Cable Networks OK Use Of 'F' Word In TV Shows. After President Trump allegedly used [a nasty] word to describe Haiti and some African nations in a private meeting (he denies it), the mainstream media went nuts. Quasi-news outlet CNN reveled in the toilet, saying the word nearly 200 times times in one day.
Life Time Fitness Pulls the Plug on Its In-Club News Channels. It was 4:00 PM at the Life Time gym in Chanhassen, Minnesota, and the 55-inch flat screen in the corner, right above the Smith Machine and adjacent to the Pilates studio, should have been tuned to CNN. The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer would be coming on as soon as the commercial break was over, but today was different. Over the holidays, Life Time executives determined that CNN and a host of other cable news channels are not consistent with its "overall healthy way of life philosophy and commitment to provide family-oriented environments." So instead of Wolf, gym-goers are now fed positive, healthy content programming, such as A&E, which was now airing on the TV set normally reserved for CNN. On that particular day, the show airing in lieu of The Situation Room was an episode of Intervention in which a "mother of three resorts to prostitution to feed her crack addiction." Healthy programming indeed.
That Game on Your Phone May Be Tracking What You're Watching on TV. At first glance, the gaming apps — with names like "Pool 3D," "Beer Pong: Trickshot" and "Real Bowling Strike 10 Pin" — seem innocuous. One called "Honey Quest" features Jumbo, an animated bear. Yet these apps, once downloaded onto a smartphone, have the ability to keep tabs on the viewing habits of their users — some of whom may be children — even when the games aren't being played. It is yet another example of how companies, using devices that many people feel they can't do without, are documenting how audiences in a rapidly changing entertainment landscape are viewing television and commercials.
How Trump's election killed comedy. "Comedy is dead, except for calling Donald Trump a Nazi," said Rodney Lee Conover, a right-leaning comedian who got his start writing jokes for Rush Limbaugh. The tectonic shift left is not just in comedy clubs' brick walls but in our living rooms. Johnny Carson's middle-of-the-road political comedy has been replaced with Stephen Colbert (host of CBS' "The Late Show"), John Oliver (host of HBO's "Last Week Tonight"), Trevor Noah (host of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show") and others bashing all things conservative on a nightly basis. Jimmy Kimmel has turned his late-night program on ABC into a seminar on health care. Although his rants have been judged as inaccurate and misleading, it doesn't stop them from being shared across social media, where they become gospel for many Americans. Mr. Kimmel revealed that some of his pro-Obamacare monologues were based on talking points provided by Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat.
ESPN to lay off 150 people, latest round of cuts at sports broadcasting network. ESPN President John Skipper announced Wednesday morning [11/29/2017] the network will be terminating approximately 150 employees, bringing the total number of employees the network has let go in 2017 to about 250. Of the latest round of layoffs, Skipper stated, "We appreciate their contributions, and will assist them as much as possible in this difficult moment with severance, a 2017 bonus, the continuation of health benefits and outplacement services." The employees that were let go worked in "studio production, digital content, and technology."
ESPN Subscribers Drop to 14-Year Low, Putting Pressure on Disney. ESPN lost 2 million subscribers last fiscal year, underscoring the challenge owner Walt Disney Co. faces attracting young people who don't pay for cable. The network, one of the most watched on the cable dial, had 88 million U.S. subscribers at the end of September, including people paying for online versions, Disney said in its annual report Wednesday. That's down from a peak of 100 million in 2010 and marks the lowest total since 2003. To ensure the long-term future of one of its most profitable businesses, Disney Chief Executive Officer Bob Iger is negotiating to include ESPN in new digital forms of pay TV, such as Sling TV and DirecTV Now.
ESPN Loses $1 Billion, More Layoffs Coming. It's going to be a very unhappy holiday season for employees at ESPN as reports indicate more layoffs are coming between now and Christmas after massive losses to the anti-Trump sports network. Somewhere between 60 and 100 employees are slated for the chopping block through the end of the year which represents $80 million in salaries ESPN is trying to salvage to offset an almost $1 billion budget shortfall.
LGBT characters on U.S. TV at record highs. The number of lesbian, gay and transgender characters on U.S. television shows have reached record highs, and campaign group GLAAD said on Thursday [11/9/2017] that their stories were more important than ever given moves in the United States to roll back LGBT acceptance.
CNN to Sell Web Subscriptions in Quest for $1 Billion in Sales. CNN is getting into the digital subscription business, part of an ambitious plan by the cable news channel to generate $1 billion a year in online revenue in the next five years. The cable news network plans to charge for access to exclusive content and live events with some of its biggest stars, like Fareed Zakaria, said Matt Dornic, a CNN spokesman. The material would be in addition to what CNN already offers for free online. Online publishers are focusing increasingly on getting their readers to pay for journalism as it becomes more difficult to survive on digital advertising — a market dominated by two tech giants: Google and Facebook Inc.
A million people cut the cord in the last 3 months, and cable companies are worried. Cord-cutting, or at least the speed at which people are ditching pay TV, is on track to be the biggest upset of the year. There's finally a collection of cheap-ish streaming services widely available, and as you'd imagine, people are jumping ship from cable as fast as humanly possible. The latest bad data points come from the Q3 earnings of all the big cable companies, which are mostly now public. DSLReports added up the damage, and it makes for bad reading if you're a cable company exec.
Remember When Television Was Entertaining? There is no question that the [ABC] network and partner ESPN have been suffering horribly from cord-cutting and streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu. However, alienating viewers with leftist political pandering won't address the problem. [...] There's something disturbing about a major corporation like Disney allowing its operations to use their scripted shows to spew out unrelenting liberal propaganda. [...] People just want to be entertained after work and yet, after a massive sex scandal surrounding a powerful megaproducer, television producers such as ABC continue to force-feed their progressive worldview on unsuspecting viewers. In the process, they lose sight of Walt Disney's original vision of clean, family-friendly television.
NFL or Gilligan's Island, the Choice Is Easy. It's not a tough decision at all, for me the choice is obvious. This year I'll be watching reruns of Gilligan's Island before I'll watch a single down of the National Football League. I just don't have the interest level that I once had in watching professional football, it simply doesn't appeal to me anymore. And it won't appeal to me until the NFL decides to stand up to the thugs and prima donnas on its payroll who want to protest against the very country that has enriched them far beyond that of most Americans.
The Editor says...
Why not just turn the television OFF and read a book, or walk around the block, or something? Must you be entertained constantly?
TV Execs Scramble to Stop Plummeting NFL Ratings, Suggest Canceling Ten 'Thursday Night Football' Games. Network executives are scrambling to solve the growing problem of crashing ratings for the National Football League, by cutting games to end the perceived "over-saturation" of football on TV. To put an end to the sliding ratings, the executives are proposing that fewer games may be the ticket to stop that "over-saturation," with one idea being to cut Thursday Night Football by a whopping ten games.
America Fights Back: Record Number of Patriotic Cord-Cutters Tumble TV Stocks. There is only one way — one! — to finally and forever destroy Hollywood and much of the mainstream media. You have to cut your cable or satellite cord. You have to cancel your pay TV package. The one-legged stool propping up ESPN, CNN, MSNBC, Disney, MTV, and the entire Tinseltown crime syndicate is you paying for cable TV. [...] Not to put too fine a point on it, but there is no single act any American can perform that will do more damage to the institutional left than to cut your cable/satellite cord. So please do so today.
Nolte: Want to Destroy ESPN and CNN Forever? Cut the Cord, Dummy. Almost all of the cultural and political power possessed by Hollywood and the mainstream media is held up by a one-legged stool, a single leg that gets shakier by the month — this increasingly fragile appendage we call the Pay TV Package. Going forward, for reference purposes, the Pay TV Package is your cable or satellite bundle, which brings with it hundreds of channels and a monthly bill that dings you for $1000 to $1500 a year. Without this bundle, almost every institution determined to destroy everything you hold dear — faith, family, country, individual liberty, self-reliance, prosperity, racial harmony, and moral decency — would disappear entirely or at least be much weaker than it currently is. Of course, I am talking about CNN, ESPN, Comedy Central, Disney, MTV, MSNBC, and the like — institutions you — yes YOU — are subsidizing against your will.
How To Destroy CNN, Survive Without Cable TV, And Save Lots of $$$. Did you know that, on average, CNN is not only in last place behind MSNBC, but that the left-wing outlet's average viewers are below 1 million? With such poor ratings, there is no way CNN could survive on advertising revenue alone. So how does CNN stay afloat? By picking YOUR pocket. Yes, Genius, YOU are subsidizing a Fake News outlet that is actively trying to destroy you and everything you stand for. How? Whether or not you watch CNN (and no one really does), if it is part of your cable package, you are putting money directly into CNN's pocket with what is called a subscription fee.
Bring on transgender nudity and demonize the military? The fall premieres have begun on prime-time TV, and just when you thought we couldn't sink lower into the cesspool, there are new "milestones" for the liberal cultural commissars to honor. The Daily Beast reported with great pride that the Amazon show "Transparent" will have TV's first transgender full-frontal nude shot, during a massage scene: [...]
To see your gestures, the TV will have to watch you continuously.
Do you really want that?
End of the TV remote could be nigh as scientists invent technology to change channel using gestures. The television remote could become a thing of the past according to scientists who have developed a new technology that allows the device to be controlled through gestures instead. Computer scientists at Lancaster University have come up with a system that makes it possible interact with screens simply by using body movements, or waving objects. Requiring only a simple webcam, the "Matchpoint" works by displaying moving targets that orbit a small circular "widget" in the corner of the screen.
TV And The Cloud People. The people who have long careers in television, making hit shows, all have something in common. They make it their first priority to give the public what they want. Whatever political or personal agendas they have are secondary to putting on a good show. Unlike a pollster or political operator, the guy pitching TV shows has skin in the game. He has to be good at gauging public attitudes or else the show flops. The pollsters never suffer for being wrong. The thing is though, the TV shows also tell us, the Dirt People, something about the people who rule over us. Hollywood is, after all, the class of people in American, whose duty it is to sing the praises of our rulers. It's also their job to sell the public on the official cultural agenda. Whatever fads or social issues are being pushed by our ruling class, will be praised in our TV shows and movies. It's why all of our action heroes are barren cat ladies now. It's why commercials are now full of race mixing.
Remember When Late Night Talk Shows Were Entertaining? Regardless of your position on Obamacare or on the 2016 election, the bigger picture here is how ponderous and self-reverential and sanctimonious our late night shows (and their hosts) have become. Can we get back to entertainment please? If I want political debates on candidates and issues, I've got plenty of cable channels to choose from. Last I checked, the network late night talk shows were supposed to serve a different purpose. I want a humorous and entertaining talk show at the end of my busy and complicated day[,] and I doubt I'm alone.
The Emmys Celebrate a Dying Industry. [Scroll down] In fact, general TV audience has declined steadily among all ages below 65-year-olds in the past six years. In the first quarter of 2011, Americans spent an average of 42 hours watching TV per week, according to Nielsen data. By the first quarter of 2017, that number had dropped to 34. The viewership of those aged between 12 and 24 years old has changed by the highest percentage since 2011, a 41 percent decline.
Emmys Go Political in the First Minute. The 2017 Emmys Awards ceremony wasted no time getting political during Sunday's opening segment, as host Stephen Colbert and friends made political jokes within the very first minute — and Colbert quickly accused President Trump of treason.
Hurricane Irma And How The Left Has Politicized Even The Weather. A number of years ago, I sat down with the general manager of a major television news station. He told me that in their own survey, viewers tuned in for "weather first, sports second, and news last." Therefore he stressed, weather forecasters were the "cash cow" of the station. He further explained that much of television weather forecasting was a "sham." He said that decades ago, they would give a "one-day" forecast. But then Station B across town went to a "two-day" forecast. So then they countered with a "three-day" forecast," until everyone went to the "useless seven-day" forecasts. He emphasized that it was all done for reasons of competition and ratings and that with a "seven-day" forecast, the station and the networks were playing viewers for "fools," because they normally "couldn't even get the forecast for tomorrow correct."
Fox Sports to cut commercials to just six seconds during NFL games to try and hold viewers attention. NFL ratings dropped in 2016, and in an attempt to fix the problem, Fox Sports will reportedly experiment with six-second advertisements alongside their traditional 15- and 30-second spots. According to a report by The New York Times, Fox Sports is attempting to make the six-second advertisement an 'industry standard'.
Here's why ESPN is imploding. ESPN's first problem has been the move of TV viewers to cheaper online viewing platforms. With younger viewers increasingly choosing to forgo expensive cable packages in favor of selective products like Netflix, ESPN has been left with big bills and not enough subscribers. Making matters worse, ESPN continues to charge existing subscribers an excessive premium for its product. Why does it do so? In part, because it must. After all, ESPN has spent the last few years spending billions of dollars on broadcasting rights for a wide array of tournaments. Had they negotiated more effectively — perhaps sacrificing one sport to disabuse other sports of their confidence in demanding astronomic broadcast fee payments — ESPN could have reduced their front-end costs and offered lower subscriber rates.
Is ESPN Unraveling? I don't know, but it's certainly hurting. [...] But don't worry. You'll be seeing more women in front of the camera. John Skipper, the left-winger who runs ESPN, has directed that more women appear in "front-facing positions" during NFL coverage. If he doesn't pay them what the departing males earned, there may be a pay discrimination suit in ESPN's future. Why is ESPN in so much trouble? Mainly because people are "cutting the cable."
Poll Shows CNN Brand Plummeting. [Scroll down] "CNN's negative acceleration point happened in mid-October 2016, around the time Anderson Cooper interviewed Melania Trump, notably discussing her husband's famous 'Access Hollywood' tape," YouGov's Ted Marzilli notes. "Also at that time, a local North Carolina Republican office was firebombed, causing conservative-leaning media to pounce on CNN for suggesting Trump's rhetoric spurred the incident."
ESPN hemorrhaging viewers? ESPN reportedly lost 555,000 subscribers this month, according to sports writer Clay Travis. The drop in November for the sports media company comes right after its worst-ever month, when it lost an estimated 621,000 subscribers in October.
View' the Dumbest Show on TV? This week, "The View" discussed the death of Fidel Castro. You can
practically predict where this is going without watching a single frame:
• Unabashed Obama defense
• A clear lack of knowledge on the subject
• Turning the death of a dictator into a Trump-bashing session.
If you guessed all three ... congratulations! The show's hosts mostly defended President Obama's toothless statement concerning Castro's death, one that didn't dare mention any of the vile truths of his reign.
"The View" is About to Get Cancelled, Audience is Tired of Arguments Mocking Jesus and the Bible. Rosie and Whoopi may be abandoned soon as "The View" receives poor ratings. Countrywide, viewers are tired of the yelling matches, and arguments that mock Jesus and the Bible. Reports show ratings have plunged due to Rosie and Whoopi's continuous bickering back and forth, and the audience is complaining that the two constantly interrupt interviewers as well. This long-running show may be in their final season. Not only is there a bad vibe on set, but producers are fed up working around them.
Drown Out the Lying MSM. Do you enjoy being lied to? Or do you have to watch sports so badly that you're willing to fork over $150 per month for a cable or dish subscription that directly funds people who hate you and everything you believe in and want to mislead you, all while insulting you to your face? In a budget-conscious move three years ago, I decided to terminate our television package. Not only did I drown out the weasels on my screen, I increased the amount of quality time spent with my family and saved a lot of money.
BBC targets children to promote the transgender propaganda. The BBC has been accused of acting recklessly after targeting children as young as six with a programme about a schoolboy who takes sex-change drugs.
Outrage As BBC Promotes Transgender 'Sex Change' Show To Children As Young As Six. A BBC Television program directed at young children came under fire concerning a story-line about an 11-year old transgender character taking hormone blockers. British parents and political leaders are outraged over the transgender story-line in "Just A Girl," a show aimed at children as young as six, reports the Mirror. Peter Bone, a Tory Member of Parliament, called the show "inappropriate" and said he would demand the show be removed.
The Media Must Be Dismantled In Order For Freedom To Survive. News has always been biased, but the American media exists for one reason and one reason only in 2016 — to further the agenda of the corporate-government complex a.k.a. the globalists. [...] You will never get any truth from the media when it comes to politics and many other issues. [...] I have personally not watched television in over a year since leaving the news industry, and my mind is more focused than it has ever been in my life. I will likely never own another television in my life.
NFL ratings plunge could spell doom for traditional TV. Football, America's biggest prime-time powerhouse, has been thrust into a crisis this fall, with dwindling ratings sparking questions over whether it can remain a gold mine for television in an age when more Americans are abandoning traditional TV. Network executives have long used the National Football League's live games as a last line of defense against the rapid growth of "cord-cutting" and on-demand viewing upending the industry. But now, the NFL is seeing its ratings tumble in the same way that the Olympics, awards shows and other live events have, falling more than 10 percent for the first five weeks of the season compared with the first five weeks of last season. A continued slide, executives say, could pose an even bigger danger: If football can't survive the new age of TV, what can?
The Editor says...
Football can survive and thrive again, if the players will keep their left-wing America-hating political opinions to themselves. Especially if the well-compensated football players complain about how tough their lives are. On the other hand, maybe it's better in the long run if the popularity of football diminishes greatly. Football is a mixture of idolatry and vanity. Football players are not heroes. They are mercenary gladiators. The game of football leaves many young players paralyzed every year, and many older players with lifetimes of irreversible brain damage. If television falls out of favor with the viewing public, that could only be a good thing, unless you work at a television station. Most over-the-air television these days is a mixture of infomercials, intellectually vacant talk shows, and local "news" programs that largely consist of re-phrased press releases from large corporations and promotional announcements for big government. I should write a book.
Bad things happen when simpletons watch too much television.
Man Accused of Murdering 90-Year-Old Woman Blames 'The Walking Dead'. Prosecutors allege that Richard Jordan Tarver, 31, kidnapped a 90-year-old woman from her home in July 2015 and forced her into the trunk of her car. When they got to a nearby cornfield, he allegedly pointed a .38-caliber handgun at the back of her head and fired, killing the elderly woman. Lavinda Counce wasn't found for ten days. Prosecutor Grant DeProw told jurors that Tarver binged on zombie television shows and decided to see how he'd fare in the event that truth mirrored fiction. "He wanted to feel what it felt like to kill someone," DeProw said.
TV alcohol ad exposure linked to greater chance of underage drinking. Exposure to TV alcohol ads can encourage teenagers to pick up their first drink and engage in hazardous drinking behavior, reveals a study published Monday [1/20/2015] in the journal JAMA Pediatrics. The survey, which included over 1,500 adolescents and young adults, suggests a direct link between receptiveness to these ads and teens' likelihood to binge drink. "The alcohol industry claims that their advertising self-regulation program protects underage youths from seeing their ads. Our study indicates that it does not," lead study author Susanne E. Tanski, pediatrician at the Chilldren's Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock and associate professor of pediatrics at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth University, said in a news release.
Read more, watch ESPN less. In a commencement address at the University of Central Florida, [ESPN President John] Skipper bemoaned the fact that, according to a recent survey, the average American spends three hours a day in front of a television and just 19 minutes reading. "Please watch a little less television," the TV executive implored. I would modify his plea slightly. Please watch less ESPN. Why? Because [...] ESPN has taken the side of the political left.
The Misinformation Age. Young people are floating in a sea of mass media and they have never known any other way. It's perhaps why millennials are so demanding and entitled. Watching TV is a passive exercise. It is up to the show or movie to entertain you, the viewer. There's no reward for loyalty to a channel, a show or a personality, so there is no loyalty. Consuming mass media is a purely transactional exercise. With so many channels competing for your attention, you have every right to be demanding. Kids raised on TV are certain to be transactional in their daily human relations. The thing is, our mass media culture is mostly fabricated nonsense. Most of what the news people "report" is made up. As soon as you see the word "sources" you know what follows is invented. Even when someone is named as a source, nine times out of ten we learn that the named source did not actually say what he was claimed to have said.
Nothing But Commercials: Furious viewers hit out at NBC for delaying Rio broadcast by an hour before filling opening ceremony with ad breaks. Furious sport fans have blasted NBC executives over social media for their decision to delay broadcasting the Rio Olympics opening ceremony. Viewers also lambasted network bosses for peppering the ceremony with advertising breaks, with the first coming barely five minutes into the event. NBC executives refused to show the ceremony live, either on television or streaming online, in order to knock it back to the 8pm prime time slot.
The Death of the VCR Is a Time To Reflect on Disruptive Technologies That Pols Hate. Technology ultimately liberates the masses more than it allows overlords to direct and control our lives. The audience, presumed to be dumb receivers of whatever messages were beamed into or onto them by leaders, corporations, and others, has more power over media than ever before.
ESPN Wastes No Time Going Political at ESPYs. You planned to have a smoke, maybe walk the dog before the ESPYs got in full swing. Figuring that ESPN would at least recap some of the year in sports before putting on display their craven and gratuitous sellout to radical, racial activism. Well, you guessed wrong. NBA stars Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Dwayne Wade, and LeBron James derailed the evening of expected jockular festivities, instead redirecting the crazy train that ESPN has become down the tracks of athlete activism.
ESPN Turns ESPY Awards Into Black Lives Matter Rally. ESPN is a girlish, gay chat channel like Bravo that features slightly less house-flipping and slightly more homoerotic tributes to the physical male ideal. It's evil, it's stupid, it's a waste of your time, and it's time to block the channel so that you're never tempted to give them your money ever again.
Why I Blame TV for Trump. I really would like to blame Trump. But everything he is doing is with TV news' full acquiescence. Trump doesn't force the networks to show his rallies live rather than do real reporting. Nor does he force anyone to accept his phone calls rather than demand that he do a face-to-face interview that would be a greater risk for him. TV news has largely given Trump editorial control. It is driven by a hunger for ratings — and the people who run the networks and the news channels are only too happy to make that Faustian bargain.
ESPN Has Lost 7 Million Subscribers The Past Two Years. According to a 10K filing from Disney today, which you can read here, ESPN now has 92 million subscribers. That's a troubling number because just two years ago ESPN reported it had 99 million subscribers in the same 10k filing. The last time ESPN had 92 million subscribers was 2006, so the past two years have erased the previous seven years of subscriber growth. These filings are important because it's the first public acknowledgement of ESPN's massive subscriber losses. Given that the average ESPN subscriber pays $6.61 a channel per month, this means that ESPN has lost somewhere in the neighborhood of $550 million in subscriber revenue per year since 2013.
Your Phone Is Listening — Literally Listening — to Your TV. The TV is on in the background, and you're replying to a quick email on your phone nearby. You don't know it, but the devices are communicating. During a commercial, the TV emits an inaudible tone and your phone, which was listening for it, picks it up. Somewhere far away, a server makes a note: Both devices probably belong to you. This information about which devices belong to whom is immensely valuable to advertisers hoping to target ads specifically to you.
Is the FCC ready to think outside the set-top box? About 99% of the nation's 100 million pay TV subscribers lease a set-top box, with the average household paying $231 a year in rental fees, according to a survey by Sens. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). Those costs are one reason a growing number of so-called cord cutters are dropping their conventional pay TV service and now are streaming programming over the Internet directly through smart TVs or via much smaller devices, such as Roku, Chromecast and Apple TV, that they can purchase instead of rent.
Report: ESPN plans to cut 350 jobs. The reduction of about 4.3% of its workforce could be announced early Wednesday [10/21/2015], the report said, citing unnamed sources. ESPN declined to comment on the report. The network has been battling rising programming costs and sluggish advertising sales as viewers increasingly ditch cable for streaming options.
Thursday Night Football is a menace to American families. My husband's dish list keeps me busy while he lounges on our couch watching the games. Some years, I don't get to all of them, and they roll over to the following year. Some dishes become beloved and therefore frequently repeated. On Sundays during the football season, my husband doesn't accompany me to the many children's birthday parties that our kids get invited to. We don't make plans to go out. My husband isn't responsible for errands. We don't do any shopping. I don't engage him in conversation about anything more complicated than "What's the score?" and "So you want more of that?"
The Editor says...
Well, lady, it is obvious that the television has a higher priority than you do. Perhaps you ignored the warning signs before you married this guy, but now you're stuck with him. You could convert to his religion (football, that is), or, you could treat his affection for the TV as an addiction, which it is. If you ask him rational questions to point out the fruitless futility of his hobby, it will only make him angry. For example, if you ask him how his life is any better or worse on Monday morning because his favorite football team won or lost, he won't have an answer other than "shut up."
Mexico hands out free TVs to the poor in massive giveaway. Cradling a flat-screen television set in her arms, Tomasa Lopez beamed at her good fortune: She'd just taken part in the world's biggest distribution of free digital televisions. Lopez, a domestic servant, was among thousands of people who've thronged a cavernous tent in the populous working-class Iztapalapa district, one of hundreds of venues across Mexico where the poor are receiving some of the 10 million digital television sets the government is giving away at no charge.
The Editor says...
Just what they need. The government keeps the teeming masses docile by providing bread and circuses. These days the circus is televised. And here's the best part of the whole deal: The government bought all the TVs, so it doesn't cost anybody anything!
10 Most Politically Incorrect Moments this TV Season — Part One. Hollywood has a narrative, and usually it isn't too subtle. Religious people are perverts (and not just the priests), Republicans are oppressive, civil rights crusaders are saints, every variety of sexuality that doesn't start with the prefix hetero needs protection from an ignorant world, etc. If a white businessman shows up on Law and Order, stop wondering who the bad guy is.
The Pixelated Moron-Maker. The technology's pioneers exuded higher hopes. Inventor Lee de Forest exclaimed, "What thrilling lectures on solar physics will such pictures permit!" RCA honcho David Sarnoff predicted "a new horizon, a new philosophy, a new sense of freedom, and greatest of all, perhaps, a finer and broader understanding between all peoples of the world." My studies have yet to reveal a prophecy of television creating a new race of quarter-ton amoeba-people or transmitting mental retardation to its most faithful viewers.
TV Watchdog: 91% of Sexually Violent 'Jokes' on Family Guy Involved Children. Ninety-one percent of the sexually violent "jokes" during the 2014-2015 season of Fox Broadcast Network's animated Family Guy were about abusing children, up from 75 percent in 2012-2013, according to a research study by the Parents Television Council (PTC), a TV watchdog group. Comedic references to child sex abuse on the show have increased 16 percent since 2012, researchers found. The study identified 58 scenes over the past three years in which there was a humorous treatment of rape, statutory rape, molestation, or pedophilia. In 79 percent of these scenes, children are the victim.
Today in TV History: The Culmination of 'Murphy Brown' vs. Dan Quayle. Seldom have the spheres of politics and narrative television become more intertwined than in the lead-up to Murphy Brown's fourth season finale. And in the annals of history, the battle between fictional character Murphy Brown and sitting Vice President Dan Quayle was decidedly definitively for the former.
Ad nauseam: Why have commercials gotten so crude? Judging by a spate of new advertisements, what goes on in the bathroom is everyone's business. [...] These are not subtle euphemisms. And some people like to eat while watching television. Commercials are getting cruder and cruder, but unlike television shows, they are harder to avoid. Particularly during sporting events, where you'd rather not use the DVR. You can be taking in a perfectly nice baseball game, but it will be interrupted constantly by ads for Cialis or wet wipes.
From Edward Murrow to Diane Sawyer, the deterioration of TV news. Somewhere, Edward R. Murrow is saying, "I warned you this would happen." This month (April 27) marks 50 years since the godfather of broadcast news died. [...] Murrow's visionary speech in 1958 to the Radio Television News Directors Association warned of the growing influence of corporate power in news reporting. He said the public interest could not be served when news was only "a commodity" to be sold for advertisers. He said electronic news was "an incompatible combination of show business, advertising and news." Journalism has been the loser in this combination ever since.
Mr. Noah and the Flood. Comedy Central knows that Jon Stewart's viewers are cheap dates. They are not very bright, and they are not very interested in the world around them. The function of The Daily Show is to flatter the prejudices of a certain segment of largely white and middle-aged metropolitan liberals. Daily Show viewers are not interested in original insight — indeed, the utterance of an original thought or the indulgence of an unpredictable angle of analysis would undermine the entire structure of the program. Daily Show viewers tune in so that they can be made to feel clever for continuing to believe the things they already believe. There is no reason to believe that [Trevor] Noah is going to fail to deliver those exceedingly modest goods.
Fast forward: Networks speed up TV shows to play more ads. It's said that time speeds up as we get older. The same is now apparently true for old TV shows. Actress Courtney Cox, who starred in the series "Friends," noticed it while watching a rerun of one her old shows. "My voice sounds so different because I think they speed it up a little bit, they speed it up a few frames to get another commercial in there," Cox told Conan O'Brien. She's right. With ad growth slowing and ratings slipping at some cable channels, some broadcasters are shortening their shows to have room for more ads.
The Editor says...
This has been going on for at least 25 years. When syndicated shows were played on one-inch videotape machines with dynamic tracking, it was quickly discovered that the shows could be played at 105 percent of normal speed and hardly anyone would notice. These days the shows are played on video servers, and no doubt there are servers that can play back a show a little faster than normal. This practice came to a halt (20 years ago) when the sponsors discovered they were only getting 29 seconds of air time while paying for 30.
Smart TVs Are Collecting And Storing Your Private Conversations. Compare Samsung's
wording... ["]Please be aware that if your spoken words include personal or other sensitive
information, that information will be among the data captured and transmitted to a third party
through your use of Voice Recognition.["] with Orwell's: ["]The telescreen received and
transmitted simultaneously. Any sound that Winston made, above the level of a very low
whisper, would be picked up by it, moreover, so long as he remained within the field of vision
which the metal plaque commanded, he could be seen as well as heard. There was of course no
way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment...["]
[Emphasis in original.]
Not in front of the telly: Warning over 'listening' TV. Samsung is warning customers about discussing personal information in front of their smart television set. The warning applies to TV viewers who control their Samsung Smart TV using its voice activation feature. Such TV sets "listen" to some of what is said in front of them and may share details they hear with Samsung or third parties, it said. Privacy campaigners said the technology smacked of the telescreens, in George Orwell's 1984, which spied on citizens.
Fear and Loathing at the Nanny Bowl. [Fortunately] the on-field action was so compelling, because the ads were so unpalatable. By my rough count, there were at least two ads featuring people with no legs, one with a missing father, one with misogynistic anti-male crack from comedienne Sarah Silverman, and one ad bullying a ten year old boy because he said someone "plays like a girl." (The horror.) And perhaps most infamously based on comments on Twitter and even the London Daily Mail, one dead ten year old boy, thanks to Nationwide.
Beware Of The Pop-Culturized History Channel! As Americans, history is far too valuable to let accuracy be re-written by Hollywood and revised by media as a form of "entertainment."
How Bureaucrats Tried and Failed to Make TV [Worse]. Television permeates our culture and enters our homes and lives in a way that would certainly horrify the early self-appointed gatekeepers between electronic media and the American public. That's a good thing, because the broad realm of video entertainment that we now call "television" would be [much] less interesting if innovators hadn't put much of the medium beyond the gatekeepers' grasp. Relying on early rulings issued by courts baffled by new forms of communication, those gatekeepers insisted that free speech protections didn't apply to moving images and broadcast radio waves. That made it open season for control freak regulators — and all those who inevitably crawl out from under their rocks to manipulate the power of regulation to achieve their own ends.Viewers turned off by Hollywood writers' strike 'may never switch TV on again'. American TV networks have lost almost a quarter of their audiences because of the Hollywood writers' strike, according to new figures, and executives fear that "orphaned" viewers may never return.
Violence on Television: Women's lives matter except in primetime. In just one week of prime time television, female characters were violently assaulted 129 times. They were punched, thrown down stairs, run over by cars, stabbed and tortured. Women were hung to death, strapped to tables and used as medical experiments, even graphically tortured through witchcraft where characters' eyes bled. When all the violence was finished, 10 women lay dead. But it's OK. It's all in the name of "entertainment."
The Editor says...
There is one sure way to keep that garbage out of your house: Dispose of your television(s). Push it (or them) out to the curb on Recycle Day, and find something else to do. I did it several years ago. There will always be lower-class losers who bathe in "entertainment," but you don't have to be one of them.
Watching action movies could make you overeat, study says. It is no secret that TV viewing encourages mindless snacking, but it turns out that this effect may be particularly pronounced when it comes to watching certain types of shows. A new study has found that people watching a Hollywood action movie ate twice the amount of snacks as those watching an interview program.Too much TV for tots. Many parents have created homes where the TV is a nearly constant presence, all around the house. Almost half the children (43 percent) aged 4 to 6 have a TV in their bedroom. Even more shocking, there's an idiot box in 19 percent of the rooms with babies one year or younger.
Florida boy, 8, crushed to death by large TV in freak accident. Authorities say an 8-year-old Jacksonville boy has died after being crushed by a large television.
TV and Furniture as dangerous as Guns to Children under 10. As many children under ten die from accidental falling TVs and Furniture as from guns.
How Government Regulations Created the Time Warner-CBS Blackout. When Congress and the FCC came up with the "must-carry" and "retrans consent" rules, they were afraid that local TV stations would be at the mercy of monopoly cable systems. That didn't make much sense then, but today with cable facing competition from two national satellite TV providers, video service from traditional phone companies like Verizon and AT&T, as well as Internet video, it definitely doesn't make any sense now. Congress should completely deregulate the video distribution marketplace by repealing broadcaster's special rights.The Media is the Politics. In a random telephone survey of 1,000 parents of children ages two months to 2 years in Washington state and Minnesota, parents said they let their babies watch television for "fun and education." Few of them admit they use the tube as an electronic babysitter. In other studies, doctors suggest that babies who watch television experience changes in their brain development at a time when they should be learning to talk through association with the larger of their species.
The Role of Television in Social Engineering, Predictive Programming, Culture Creation and Destruction of Children and Society. This website is on the subject of "dajjaals" (great liars), and Satan and the Jinn, and what is connected to this of magic and the occult, and there are related issues that branch off from these subjects that are worthy of being covered. From them is the television, which is simply an effective brainwashing and social engineering tool. One of the clearest and most blatant aims of what is delivered through television is the "abolition of the family" (by tearing away and destroying all its bonds). You just need to go and read up on eugenecist, self-righteous elitist socialist, collectivist, bigots like Aldous Huxley, Julian Huxley, George Bernard Shaw, Bertrand Russell, Charles Darwin, H.G. Wells and others to understand the war on "the family unit". Television is the most-effective means of delivery for that envisaged social engineering.
Television: A Weapon of Mind Destruction? Although little is known about changes that occur in the brain when children watch TV, much has been written in print and on the web about the negative cognitive and behavioral outcomes associated with TV viewing. The claim that watching TV adversely impacts children's imagination is of special interest in this paper. [...] How may TV viewing affect children's imagination? Are children who watch more TV less imaginative than those who watch little or no TV? How has imagination been defined and studied? This paper examines the relationship between TV viewing and children's imagination to evaluate whether watching TV undermines children's capacity to think imaginatively and creatively.
Findings: Parents Not Protecting Children from Destructive Media. Christian parents are not protecting their children from destructive media according to recent findings by America's Research Group (ARG) sponsored by Mastermedia International. Only 22% say that their Christian faith "very much" affects the movies or television programs they see or let their children view. Only three in ten parents are even in the room when their kids watch TV. "This is alarming," says Dr. Larry Poland, Chairman of Mastermedia International, the consulting organization which sponsored the research. "Considering the violent, sexually explicit, and profane content of much of film, television, and internet content, this is parental negligence of the first order."TV and Tykes Don't Mix. Kids aren't just gravitating to the tube; the one-eyed monster is being used as a babysitter by parents who think they're too busy for them and by folks who see giving a child his own tube as a way of allowing parents to gorge on TV themselves. … This is so sad, because TV makes kids fatter and dumber.
Thousands still watch TV in black and white. More than 7,000 people [in England] still watch TV in black and white more than half a century after colour broadcasts began. London has the most TV licences for black and white sets at 1,768, followed by 431 in the West Midlands and 390 in Greater Manchester. [...] The figures were released by TV Licensing in what appears to be a reminder that anyone watching television must by law have a TV licence.
BBC [is] a total waste of money: more evidence. Is anyone remotely surprised by this? This is what happens when you get an institution featherbedded with free money (confiscated from the taxpayer or licence-fee payer) and utterly unaccountable to its customers. Over the years this has led to the creation of a top-heavy management culture imperiously aloof to the point of contempt over what its audience wants, likes or needs, and splendidly indifferent to the kind of efficiencies it would certainly need to adopt were it subject to the disciplines of the private sector.
BBC shuns video servers and clings to videotape:
BBC suspends technology boss over 'wasted' £100m. Lord Hall said the Digital Media Initiative, an effort to develop desktop computer software to make the programme making process faster and more efficient, would be shut down immediately. It was meant to link up the way BBC staff create, share, manage and archive digital footage, and do away with video tape.
BBC loses £100 million on useless technology. What I find most extraordinary about this story is that it's one of those things that could only possibly happen in the fantastical parallel universe inhabited by public-sector institutions. The basic rules of business do not apply to the BBC bubble. That is the reason the licence fee should be scrapped — not because the Beeb doesn't produce some amazing programmes, which it does, but because it pays for this sort of catastrophe.Colour TV licence goes up to £142.50. Black-and-white only licences will go up by £1 from £47 to £48, it was confirmed today. The current cost of a basic colour TV licence is £139.50.
More and more Germans boycotting state media fees. Beatrix von Storch, deputy leader of the AfD, has claimed that her account has been suspended for not paying her mandatory fees for Germany's state media. A woman was also jailed for two months for non-payment.
'Transparent' Shows TV's First Transgender Full-Frontal Nude Scene. Before Season 4 of Transparent started production, transgender actress Alexandra Billings, who plays Maura's friend and mentor Davina on the series, walked into the writer's room to pitch. She said she wanted to be naked. That, of course, is a crude simplification of the process. Billings' friend and Transparent co-star Trace Lysette suggested that the two of them talk to the show's writers about their lives and experiences as transgender women, with the hope that they might incorporate them, and therefore a broader reflection of the varied transgender experience, into the show's storylines.
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AMC's 'Preacher' Opens With Graphic Jesus Sex Scene, Closes With Inbred Messiah. Let's offer some congratulations to AMC's Preacher for giving me the fastest, most efficient subject for an article yet. The latest episode featured a subject so embarrassingly crass that I'm shocked I got through the entire episode without slamming my head against a wall. It only takes three simple words: Jesus having sex.
Trump's revenge and how Woodward/Bernstein ruined journalism. Trump's self-made video parody that shows him wrestling down CNN has all the self-righteous pundits in an uproar, but it puts the heat where it belongs... on CNN and the rest of them that round-the-clock give him no peace, no mercy, no fairness, no slack. [...] On top of that the obscenities coming from our TV news and talk shows are so violent that there is no choice but to say that we are past media bias and deep into media depravity.
'Family Feud' not so family-friendly anymore? [Scroll down] Dan Gainor, VP of Business and Culture at the Media Research Center, told FOX411 game shows have always pushed the limit, and the recent episodes of "Family Feud" are simply the result sexual content becoming more commonplace on TV. "I think what has changed is that Hollywood has so undermined and coarsened our culture, that these answers have become the norm... Sex acts many Americans had never even heard of are now typical dialogue," Gainor said in an email. "Shows like 'Scream Queens' and 'Scandal' are trying to see how far they can go. And TV is always trying to go further."
Guess which ABC show will feature full frontal nudity? I suspect it's going to shock a lot of moms and dads when they discover that the family-friendly Muppets of the 1970s are no more. Guess which ABC show will feature full frontal nudity? "It's sort of an adult Muppet show," Kermit the Frog said during a promotional video for the show. The mature version of "The Muppets" will cover a range of 'topics from sex and drugs to interspecies relationships, The Daily Mail reports. "No subject is off limits," one show source told the newspaper.
The Editor says...
Here is yet another example of the poisonous effects of liberalism: Fifty years ago, every TV show was appropriate for children and adults alike; but now even the children's programming has escaped the limits of propriety and decorum.
Parents' Watchdog Group: Virtually No Family-Friendly Shows Left on TV. "There's very little family programming left" on television, lamented Melissa Henson, director of grassroots and public education at the Parents Television Council (PTC). The non-partisan group, whose mission is to protect children from graphic sex, violence and profanity on TV, is urging consumers to "let your values be your guide" while shopping for the holidays. To help them, Henson recently compiled PTC's annual list of "2014 Best and Worst Advertisers" in eight categories: fast food, beverages, clothing, general retail, personal items, groceries, computers and financial services.New NBC Show Claims Gay Parents Are 'The New Normal'. From the twisted imagination that spawned the pro-gay high school show "Glee" comes another new sitcom that is poised to take the gay agenda even further. Aptly-named "The New Normal," the show depicts a gay couple's quest to have a child via a surrogate mother and the awful conservative grandmother who dares oppose them.
Reality Bites Gays. Image control has been crucial to gay activists. In 1980 Hollywood produced, Cruising, a big budget film that showed the seamier side of gay life. [...] Since then, any filmmaker who does not conform his gay characters to a positive and largely asexual template is likely to be criticized. The arrival of the AIDS pandemic helped reinforce this pressure by offering up a new version of a time honored movie stereotype — the terminally ill secular saint. Today it is allowable to use a gay drama queen as a comedic foil, but only if he is also shown to have a heart of gold. Otherwise gay characters have to be positive. In recent years such gay characters have been everywhere on TV and in movies.Former 'Saturday Night Live' star Victoria Jackson blasts 'Glee'. Comedian Victoria Jackson, who attended this year's Conservative Political Action Conference, made headlines over the weekend for her Friday column, "The Muslims Next Door," in which she criticized the television program "Glee" for continuously promoting a socially liberal lifestyle. ... "Did you see 'Glee' this week? Sickening!" Jackson, a former "Saturday Night Live" star, wrote.
Proper etiquette for televisions in public places. I was in a waiting room this morning with at least thirty people. Twenty-eight of those people were trying to read, or attempting conversations, or staring out the window. Two of them were watching the enormous television, which was blaring some obnoxious program about the pressing problem of teenage girls who run drugs for their abusive first cousins or some such nonsense. Now, it was clear that twenty-eight out of thirty people would rather have had the television off. But no one dared to touch it.TV-B-Gone: A small universal remote control for all makes of television sets, with only one button: POWER OFF. This comes in handy in waiting rooms and other places where the TV is left on continuously even though nobody is watching it.
Broadcasters worry about 'Zero TV' homes. There are 5 million of these residences in the U.S., up from 2 million in 2007.
Document location http://akdart.com/tv.html|
Updated February 12, 2019.
©2019 by Andrew K. Dart