Emmy Awards Show Great Work Still Being Done

 

Always good to honor the great work still being done in our industry. The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences presented its 32nd annual News & Documentary Emmy Awards Monday night.  TVNEWSER reports: CBS News dominated its competition, pulling home 10 awards–the most for a network news division in a decade. In addition, former CNN host Larry King received a lifetime achievement Emmy (pictured right with Brian Williams and NATAS chairman Malachy Wienges).

National Geographic Channel was next with seven awards, followed by PBS with six awards and Discovery Channel with three awards. CNN, NBC News and the New York Times all tied with two awards each, with BBC America, MSNBC, HDNet HBO, the Los Angeles Times, CNBC, NPR and Smithsonian Channel each landing one Emmy.

See the Entire Winners List Here.

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Full Text of Conan Note to NBC

The world is abuzz with speculation on the impact of Conan O’Brien telling NBC to, in the words of Johnny Paycheck, “take this job and shove it”. What I appreciate most is the sytle and tone of Conan’s writing. 

  Here it is in its entirity. 
“People of Earth:

In the last few days, I’ve been getting a lot of sympathy calls, and I want to start by making it clear that no one should waste a second feeling sorry for me. For 17 years, I’ve been getting paid to do what I love most and, in a world with real problems, I’ve been absurdly lucky. That said, I’ve been suddenly put in a very public predicament and my bosses are demanding an immediate decision.

Six years ago, I signed a contract with NBC to take over The Tonight Show in June of 2009. Like a lot of us, I grew up watching Johnny Carson every night and the chance to one day sit in that chair has meant everything to me. I worked long and hard to get that opportunity, passed up far more lucrative offers, and since 2004 I have spent literally hundreds of hours thinking of ways to extend the franchise long into the future. It was my mistaken belief that, like my predecessor, I would have the benefit of some time and, just as important, some degree of ratings support from the prime-time schedule. Building a lasting audience at 11:30 is impossible without both.

But sadly, we were never given that chance. After only seven months, with my Tonight Show in its infancy, NBC has decided to react to their terrible difficulties in prime-time by making a change in their long-established late night schedule.

Last Thursday, NBC executives told me they intended to move the Tonight Show to 12:05 to accommodate the Jay Leno Show at 11:35. For 60 years the Tonight Show has aired immediately following the late local news. I sincerely believe that delaying the Tonight Show into the next day to accommodate another comedy program will seriously damage what I consider to be the greatest franchise in the history of broadcasting. The Tonight Show at 12:05 simply isn’t the Tonight Show. Also, if I accept this move I will be knocking the Late Night show, which I inherited from David Letterman and passed on to Jimmy Fallon, out of its long-held time slot. That would hurt the other NBC franchise that I love, and it would be unfair to Jimmy.

So it has come to this: I cannot express in words how much I enjoy hosting this program and what an enormous personal disappointment it is for me to consider losing it. My staff and I have worked unbelievably hard and we are very proud of our contribution to the legacy of The Tonight Show. But I cannot participate in what I honestly believe is its destruction. Some people will make the argument that with DVRs and the Internet a time slot doesn’t matter. But with the Tonight Show, I believe nothing could matter more.

There has been speculation about my going to another network but, to set the record straight, I currently have no other offer and honestly have no idea what happens next. My hope is that NBC and I can resolve this quickly so that my staff, crew, and I can do a show we can be proud of, for a company that values our work.

Have a great day and, for the record, I am truly sorry about my hair; it’s always been that way.

Yours,

Conan”

Reviews find ‘dangerous pattern’ in morning shows’ health coverage

Coffee is good for your heart, coffee causes dementia, Orange Juice is good, Orange Juice is bad.  For years, I have coached writers and producers to view medical claims with skepticism.   Few things in life scare me more than a tease offering “new hope for women with breast cancer”,  or “Could this odd looking device end your back pain forever?”

Morning Show Health Coverage needs Rx
Morning Show Health Coverage needs Rx

Now, monitoring the health claims on television has become a vocation.   HealthNewsReview is put together by University of Minnesota journalism professor Gary Schwitzer and his team of two dozen health-news reviewers.  Every producer in the country should be looking at this.

More from Susan Perry at the MinnPost:

I seldom watch the morning network news shows. For one thing, I’m usually at my computer in the early morning hours, writing this blog. But I also like to keep my blood pressure at a low, calm level. I find much of the news reporting on the morning news shows frustratingly shallow.

Wanting to throw a cup of coffee at the TV set is not good, I believe, for one’s blood pressure.

University of Minnesota journalism professor Gary Schwitzer and his team of two dozen health-news reviewers do watch the morning news shows — or, at least, the health segments on them. They then publish their reviews of those segments on Schwitzer’s indispensable (for health consumers as well as health journalists) online site HealthNewsReview.

What they’ve found lately is disturbing, if not all that surprising. As Schwitzer wrote Monday in a “publisher’s note”:

By reviewing health news coverage every day, we are able to see big pictures of clear patterns unfolding that the casual day-to-day news consumer may miss.

One picture is quite clear. The morning health news segments on ABC, CBS and NBC do the following regularly:

• Unquestioningly promote new drugs and new technologies

• Feed the “worried well” by raising unrealistic expectations of unproven technologies that may produce more harm than good

• Fail to ask tough questions

• Make any discussion of health care reform that much more difficult

He then lists some of the network news segments that back up those perceptions. Here are a few recent examples with Schwitzer’s comments: Continue reading “Reviews find ‘dangerous pattern’ in morning shows’ health coverage”

Brian Williams to Co-Anchor Today on Friday

clipped from www.mediabistro.com

AllThree_2.19.jpgNBC’s Brian Williams will co-anchor NBC’s Today show in the morning alongside Matt Lauer, “so Meredith can take a morning off,” he announced on tonight’s Nightly News.

One of the last times Williams was on the show live and in studio was when he appeared with former Today co-anchor Katie Couric and ABC’s Charlie Gibson to promote last summer’s Stand up to Cancer event.

> Update: Meredith Vieira won’t be on the Today show tomorrow, but a tipster tells us she’ll be on The Tonight Show instead.

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UPDATE: Obama Signs DTV BILL

After passing through the Senate and House of Representatives, President Obama signed the bill that postponed the final day of analog broadcasts to June 12, 2009. The switch is now optional for broadcasters and most markets will find that some stations will be shut-off next week on the original date while major network stations will hold off until the final possible minute.

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UPDATE: 681 Local TVs to Pull Analog Plug

February 11, 2009 · No Comments

The commercial on KBSI, FOX23 in Cape Girardeau, MO, looked like so many for the DTV transition. Maybe it was me, but the tone of the announcer seemed different. This was serious, like 681 local television stations across the country, the Sinclair-owned station serving the Missouri boothell was moving ahead with it’s digital transition.

Despite congress’ recent legislation supporting a four-month delay of the transition to digital TV signals, some 40% – 681 of about 1800 – TV stations plan to make the switch after February 17 anyway. Continue reading “UPDATE: Obama Signs DTV BILL”

UPDATE: 681 Local TVs to Pull Analog Plug

The commercial on KBSI, FOX23 in Cape Girardeau, MO, looked like so many for the DTV transition. Maybe it was me, but the tone of the announcer seemed different. This was serious, like 681 local television stations across the country, the Sinclair-owned station serving the Missouri boothell was moving ahead with it’s digital transition.
Despite congress’ recent legislation supporting a four-month delay of the transition to digital TV signals, some 40% – 681 of about 1800 – TV stations plan to make the switch after February 17 anyway.

To date, 190 stations have made the change to all digital signals before Congress and the Obama Administration lobbied to delay. Their concern was the millions of U.S. households that only receive analog signals and haven’t made the necessary changes to digital service and/or TV sets.

The major networks, ABC, CBS, and NBC, said that would continue to broadcast in analog and digital. These three networks, however, only control about 100 of the total 1800 TV stations in question. The local stations that do decide to go all digital will free up some of the 700Mhz spectrum in those markets that companies such as Qualcomm have bought the rights to use.

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February 4, 2009 DTV Transition – What is Your Station Going to Do?

Inauguration was TV ratings bonanza; nielsen numbers

City-by-City Ratings-Click here for .pdf
As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, TV viewership of the Obamaugration was going to be huge. Nielsen confirms it.
Overall, Nielsen reports 29.2% of the households in the top local television markets watched the Inauguration. That could make it the most watched Inauguration since Ronald Reagan’s in 1981.

Here are cable numbers: Early cable ratings for the half-hour of Obama’s swearing-in: 8.5 million for CNN, 5.5 million for Fox News, 3.1 million for MSNBC.

NBC most watched broadcast network
Most people watching television during the day yesterday chose to watch NBC for inauguration coverage with ABC a very close second, according to Nielsen Fast National Data.

11am-2pmET

• Total Viewers:

NBC – 10,406,000

ABC – 10,129,000

CBS – 7,049,000

• A25-54 demo:

NBC – 4,335,000

ABC – 3,931,000

CBS – 2,724,000