Media Briefing for Friday, December 15, 2006
The FCC hearing in Nashville, Tennessee on Monday on the issue of media consolidation drew many top country and western artists, and had star power, according to the local daily newspaper in Music City, as Nashville is known. But it says the forum failed to focus on a major problem: payola. Payola – money paid under the table so music receives play on the radio – was only briefly mentioned, says the Tennessean.
The FCC is being challenged in court by the networks over its stringent enforcement of indecency standards in recent years. C-SPAN will cover the court proceedings, which begin next week, reports the Chicago Tribune.
Americans are spending more and more time with media. A new study shows that in 2007 the average American adult and teenager will spend more than 3,500 hours and more than $900 on media, including TV, radio, the internet, video games, and those old standbys, books, magazines and newspapers. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and the San Francisco Chronicle and Associated Press have reports.
The Associated Press has released a list of YouTube’s top videos for 2006. The list includes comedian Michael Richards’ racial rant and Virginia Senator George Allen’s macaca blunder, and is based not on which videos were most-watched, but rather on their impact, according to LostRemote.com.
The Canadian Radio and Television Commission, Canada’s version of the FCC, has just released a report saying new technology such as the internet, video telephones and iPods, pose only a slight threat to broadcasters. The CRTC says new technology’s impact on traditional broadcasting will be marginal, according to the Globe and Mail of Toronto.
Google is expanding and providing new services, and is seeking advertiser support. Google is reaching out to small and medium sized companies for advertising, not just major businesses, reports the Wall Street Journal. Google is also getting into website registration, to promote its free software products. Google will register websites ending with the suffixes .com, .net, .info and .biz (there are more than 250 suffix endings including ones for all foreign nations such as .ca for Canada and .uk for the United Kingdom and .tt for Trinidad and Tobago). Associated Press reports.
Amid much publicity this fall, Microsoft introduced its Zune, a product directly challenging Apple’s entrenched iPod. How is the Zune doing? Microsoft, known more for tools like Word and Windows than toys, has produced successful “fun” products before such as video games, and is in for the long haul with the Zune, reports the Wall Street Journal.
It’s a time-worn phrase, but the internet is the information superhighway, and the Chicago Tribune takes a “trip” down that superhighway, looking at some history.
All Mozart all the time. Fans of Mozart will want to know about a website that features the music of Mozart, with all of his major works plus information about his compositions. The site, based in Austria, is free and contains 24,000 pages, according to Associated Press.
A website for opera fans, Viva LaVoce, is not accepting any new subscribers. The media information website www.dcrtv.com reports this apparently is more fallout from the impending demise of the classical music format on WGMS 104.1 which is being sold to the owner of the football Washington Redskins. The announcement is on the Viva LaVoce site.
CBS is reviving CBS Records. CBS Records harkened back to the 1930s and its artists included Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday, Bruce Springsteen and Aerosmith. In 1988 CBS sold CBS Records to Sony, and shortly afterward the CBS Records name was folded and has been mothballed since that time. CBS will use CBS Records for artists on its network TV shows, according to the Associated Press. CBS is doing so with an eye toward the internet age, says the Los Angeles Times.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta of CNN will be making some “house calls’ at CBS during 2007. He will be contributing 10 stories to the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, reports Associated Press.
The FCC has rejected a sweeping challenge to the licenses of 18 Chicago area TV stations. The challenge had come from a progressive internet magazine known as Third Coast Press. The challenge had claimed the stations were negligent in public affairs, children’s programming and hyper-commercialization. Broadcasting & Cable magazine reports.
Primetime television is “losing its religion” with few references to faith, according to the conservative Parents Television Council, the group that orchestrated the outcry over the Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction, responsible for 99% of the protests sent to the FCC over that incident. The Los Angeles Times reports on the PTC’s new criticism.
Instead of standardized background music, travelers at Boston’s Logan Airport will soon be hearing a special radio service featuring adult contemporary music, information and specialized public service announcements. The new service is being called Logan Radio, according to the Associated Press.
Asian American advocates are decrying Rosie O’Donnell’s parody of a Chinese phrase on the daytime TV talk show The View back on December 5, in which she repeats “ching chong” over and over. The on-air performance has made the rounds on the internet, according to the San Francisco Chronicle and the Los Angeles Times. She subsequently offered an apology, but warned she probably will parody languages in the future, reports the San Francisco Chronicle. However Unity: Journalists of Color, an umbrella group of minority journalist organizations, is dissatisfied with the apology, reports Associated Press.
After a 31-year run, Inside Albany is leaving the air. The public TV show focusing on politics in New York state was seen across the state on PBS stations, and was seen in the New York City metropolitan area on Thirteen/WNET. Producer David Hepp blames the changing media landscape and lack of resources, reports Associated Press.