Media Briefing for Thursday, September 6, 2007
A standup routine by black comedian Eddie Griffin, who has appeared on TV and in movies, was stopped after he repeatedly used the N-word, according to a spokesman for Black Enterprise, which sponsored the event in Doral, Florida. The Rev. Al Sharpton, who attended a meeting held by the magazine in Miami but not the performance, “expressed gratitude that the nation’s pre-eminent magazine for African-Americans stands behind the efforts of (the Rev. Sharpton’s) National Action Network in getting rid of the N-word.” Associated Press reports.
Sex and violence are cramming the so-called family hour of 8 to 9 p.m., according to a study by the conservative Parents Television Council. The Los Angeles Times reports.
FCC Chairman Kevin Martin says he has no concerns about private equity deals for media and broadcast companies, according to CNN Money.
In Florida, parents and students are able to check on public school teachers and look for any disciplinary actions previously taken against the teachers in Florida. They can go to the Florida Department of Education site My Florida Teacher.com. Disciplinary actions taken in other states are not on the site, unless that state has information online about their teachers and former teachers now in Florida. Central Florida News 13 says it has found problems with the site.
Huntington Beach, Florida is considering requiring that all cats and dogs have implanted microchips, and that they all be neutered as well, reports the Los Angeles Times.
AT&T Wireless has introduced a product which gives parents powerful control over their child’s cellphone, including restricting people who can be called, limiting hours and limiting dollar amounts spent on calls per month.
Apple is cutting its iPhone price and revamping its iPod, reports the New York Times. The $200 price cut is angering some early iPhone owners, says the Boston Globe. Once again, Apple and Steve Jobs are full of surprises, says the San Jose Mercury News. The price cut may suggest sluggish sales, says the Los Angeles Times. The price cut is riling iPhone loyalists, says the Chicago Tribune.
Reactions to Apple’s various product announcements are pouring in. The most significant aspect is the emergence of a class of portable computer that can surf the Web, listen to music and watch video, all from a server. The price is now $299. It will doubtless be half that in a few years. And all the limits that people are complaining about — storage for example — will be long gone, according to the New York Times.
The introduction of the iPod Touch is big news, says the New York Times. It’s an iPod that looks like an iPhone. It has a 3.5-inch screen, the Multitouch interface, Wi-Fi and the Safari Web browser. The cost is $299 for an 8-gigabyte version and $399 for a 16-gigabyte model. It will be available later this month, reports the Times.
Microsoft has cut the suggested retail price of its Zune music and video player by 20 percent yesterday, the same day Apple released new versions of its iPod media player. The new suggested price for the Zune is $199, says the Boston Globe.
The U.S. intelligence community is taking a page from popular online hangouts like Facebook and MySpace to help encourage operatives to share information. In December, agency leaders are launching a social-networking site just for spies. The classified “A-Space” ultimately will grow to include blogs, searchable databases, libraries of reports, collaborative word processing and other tools to help analysts quickly trade, update and edit information. It comes on the heels of the year-old Intellipedia, a Web site modeled after the popular online encyclopedia Wikipedia. Associated Press reports.
Soon you will be able to sip Starbucks and access iTunes. Beginning October 2, the Seattle-based coffee shop chain will launch a program that allows customers to access Apple’s iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store with no connection fee or hot-spot login. A feature called “Now Playing” will show customers what’s playing over the sound system and let them buy it from iTunes for the usual price — 99 cents per song. The Seattle Times reports.
Are books pass?? The Web giants are envisioning the next chapter, books without paper, says the New York Times.
If more proof were needed that the rich are different, it could be found on aSmallWorld.net, an invitation-only social networking site. Founded four years ago, the site, promoted as a Facebook for the social elite, has grown from about 500 members to about 150,000 registered users. At a time when there are 466,550 MySpace friends, aSmallWorld has attempted to create an Internet niche by cultivating an air of exclusivity. The site functions much like an inscrutable co-op board: its members, who pay no fee, induct newcomers on the basis of education, profession and, most important, their network of personal contacts, reports the New York Times.
New York City taxi drivers went on strike over the installation of video screens in the New York Times.
In recent days Katie Couric has been reporting from Iraq, but the Chicago Tribune says her reports are not the last word on Iraq.
During a visit to Kansas City, Charles Gibson of ABC World News reminisced about the early days of his career at ABC affiliate WLVA-TV (now WSET) channel 13 Lynchburg, Virginia, and recalls that the Rev. Jerry Falwell, whose school was segregated at the time, would not speak to him. The TV Barn of the Kansas City Star reports.
China is moving to end sexually explicit content on television, reports Reuters.
Oprah is lending her brand and empire to the presidential bid of Barack Obama, says the Washington Post.
When the Fox Business Channel launches next month, it will get the channel currently occupied by MSNBC on the cable TV menu in Manhattan, reports Lost Remote.
Former FCC chairman Mark Fowler – who served under Ronald Reagan – is endorsing the proposed merger between satellite radio services XM and Sirius, in an op ed piece in the New York Sun. Sirius and XM still expect the deal to close by the end of the year, reports Associated Press.
There are pirate radio stations on 22 FM channels in Brooklyn, N.Y. and the FCC is doing nothing about it, says the New York radio message board.
KOCE channel 50 Huntington Beach, California, Orange County’s only television station, says it will launch a new, 24-hour channel featuring local news, features, traffic and weather. KOCE-TV, an award-winning PBS station, will debut its digital OC Channel on October 24 in conjunction with several partners, including the Orange County Register, Chapman University, Cox Communications and Time Warner Cable, reports Associated Press.
Vancouver, British Columbia is known as Hollywood North since so many films are produced there because of lower costs. Now, a group of Hollywood unions want federal regulators to investigate tax breaks offered by Canada to lure TV and film production north of the border. The independent Film and Television Action Committee, along with the Screen Actors Guild and several other unions presented a petition Tuesday to the U.S. trade representative alleging that Canada’s tax breaks are illegal and cost thousands of American jobs, says Associated Press.
The Rev. D. James Kennedy, who has passed away at age 76, was a pioneering Christian broadcaster and megachurch pastor whose fiercely conservative worldview helped fuel the rise of the religious right in American politics. He preached on the major policy issues of the day, rejecting abortion, evolution and global warming, says Associated Press. His political influence extended to the highest level of the nation’s leaders, reports the Washington Post.
In Pittsburgh, Foodland is running 5-second TV ads for its gasoline, reports the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.
Local radio advertisers are buying search terms from radio stations which are then posted on the station website. Type the word “bread” into a search on the Web site of KPOJ-AM 620 Portland, Oregon, and you’ll be instantly directed to an ad for Dave’s Killer Bread, reports Advertising Age This has resulted in a large increase in sales for the bread.
Matt Drudge is giving up his talk show effective Sunday, September 30, and will be replaced by WLW-AM 700 Cincinnati, Ohio talk show host Bill Cunningham in the Sunday night 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. slot, reports the Cincinnati Enquirer.In New York the Drudge broadcast is on WABC-AM 770.
The first TV spot for Hillary Clinton airs today in New Hampshire, and it contains local footage of her campaigning in Concord and Portsmouth, reports the Boston Globe.
With the mortgage crisis deepening, banks in Massachusetts are running ads criticizing mortgage companies and other types of lenders, says the Boston Globe.
Whoopi Goldberg has clarified her statements on The View about dog fights being part of the African-American culture in the South and Michael Vick’s conviction on dog fighting charges, saying she condemns the fights and treatment of the dogs. The Saint Petersburg Times(scroll down) reports.