More stories from Daniel Frankel


Speaking at an investor event in Boston Wednesday, Netflix CFO David Wells said online viewing of Nickelodeon content probably has very little to do with the double-digit ratings drops on the linear Viacom channel. He compared the ongoing discussion to the “global warming debate.” Read more »


As cable’s most powerful programming brand, you’d expect that ESPN would spend the day of its upfront presentation bolstering its still-very-lucrative linear TV model. But the Disney-owned sports media titan spent Tuesday hyping social media plans and shooting down rumors about Apple TV authentication. Read more »


Broadcasters are hopping made at Dish Network and Charlie Ergen about their new commercial-deleting DVR feature. Some might look back on litigation with ReplayTV with some regret. Broadcasters failed to get the anti-commercial-skipping ruling they were seeking at the time. Read more »

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Cord cutting / cutting the cord
photo: Shutterstock / artenot

A survey of the top 10 publicly traded cable, satellite and telco TV services providers reveals video subscriber growth of only around 494,000 in the first quarter. First-quarter subscriber growth among these companies was over 900,000 just four years ago. Read more »


Evercore, which has handled fire-sale transactions of devalued print brands including BusinessWeek and Newsweek, is showing Variety‘s sales book to 11 prospective bidders this week. Once the sale is complete, parent Reed Business Information will have completely exited the U.S. magazine business. Read more »


Already locked into a carriage dispute that threatens to keep AMC’s ad-focused hit drama Mad Men away from its 14 million subscribers, Dish Network was taken to task by Sanford Bernstein analyst Craig Moffett for new commercial-skipping features in its “Hopper” set-top boxes. Read more »


Outside its Burbank headquarters, consumers may be cutting cords, eschewing theatrical release windows and sharing pretty much everything. But Disney on Tuesday was celebrating traditional media models such as ESPN carriage fees, Disneyland admissions and Avengers box office revenues while reporting 21 percent profit growth. Read more »


DirecTV continued to reap the benefits of Latin American expansion in Q1, increasing revenue in the region by 33 percent while providing a role model for other subscription-based media companies like Netflix who are also endeavoring the expense of southern infiltration. Still, investors remain unimpressed. Read more »

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Speaking to investors during Dish Network’s Q1 conference call Monday, Dish chairman Charlie Ergen said the reason his company hasn’t reached a carriage renewal agreement with AMC stems from the fact that the cable programmer has “devalued” its content through its streaming deals. Read more »


The once dying Blockbuster brand generated a profit of nearly $14 million in the first quarter for its new corporate parent, Dish Network, flourishing as a combination streaming/physical movie rental service. Still, Dish plans to close 100 more brick-and-mortar Blockbuster stores in Q2. Read more »


Cable and broadband business veteran Lou Borrelli will head marketing for a start-up trying to make good on the promise of TV Everywhere. NimbleTV wants to make multi-channel subscribers pay a fee on top of what they’re already shelling out to stream their video anywhere. Read more »

Cord cutting / cutting the cord
photo: Shutterstock / artenot

Belying several earlier research studies, which said growth of U.S. multi-channel subscriptions has slowed significantly but not stopped, Nielsen’s latest “Cross-Platform Report” says the number of U.S. homes paying a multi-channel provider for TV services last year actually declined by 1.5 million, or about 1.5 percent. Read more »

Cablevision Dolans

With chief James Dolan mentioning unspecified software investments during Cablevision’s first-quarter earnings report Thursday morning, BTIG Research analyst Richard Greenfield believes the company is on the cusp of announcing a subscription video-on-demand service similar to Comcast’s Streampix. Read more »

YouTube 2012 Upfronts Presentation

Closing out the NewFronts alongside A-list talent ranging from Jay-Z to Virginia Madsen Wednesday night, top Google execs including Eric Schmidt and Robert Kyncl showed advertisers yet more premium YouTube channels. They also unveiled an ambitious TV-like promo campaign to let everyone know they’re around. Read more »

Kim Dotcom THR3

In a 5,700-word cover story serving a not-so-sympathetic constituency, entertainment trade The Hollywood Reporter reveals Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom to be more of an aspiring tech-media mogul than swaggering international pirate. Friends, associates and attorneys describe the Motion Picture Association of America’s least favorite person. Read more »


With initiatives like TV Everywhere and broadband usage caps, is the cable industry biting the hands of the streaming video companies that are driving its most vibrant prospect for growth? Why the cable industry might consider enabling Netflix and YouTube, not hindering them. Read more »


Hoping to spark both the suddenly sagging U.S. TV market and Google’s struggling Android-based TV platform at the same time, consumer electronics maker LG has confirmed that it will release in the U.S. two new smart TV models based on Google TV software later in May. Read more »

Cover van de Ingenieur met daarop een Blu-ray cd

Has the long-moribund home entertainment sector finally started to turn the corner? Significant growth from subscription streaming and Blu-ray rentals and sales give the industry its second up quarter out of the last three, according to studio-funded research firm the Digital Entertainment Group. Read more »


While serving as News Corp. chairman and CEO five years ago, Peter Chernin helped secure a $100 million investment into Hulu by Providence Equity Partners. Now, Providence is walking away from Hulu with around $200 million and putting it into Chernin’s production company. Read more »


Separating streamers from non-streamers, new Bernstein Research study finds that availability of kids off-net programming on Netflix does indeed hurt the ratings of the channels the shows originate from. Conversely, “catch-up” viewing of serialized dramas like Mad Men seems to help linear television viewing. Read more »


The new conventional wisdom is that Netflix won’t be able to grow its subscriber base fast enough to keep up with escalating content acquisition and foreign expansion costs, and a new wave of streaming competition will soon over-run the company. Here’s why that won’t happen. Read more »

AOL On Network

Joining the ranks of digital companies which have organized their premium video holdings into hubs of curated program channels, AOL announced Tuesday the launch of the AOL On Network. The company will sift through a library of over 320,000 short-form videos to create 14 channels. Read more »

Netflix-cracked-REV2 A SLOT

Company’s stock got hammered in after-hours trading, despite the fact that it posted a lower-than-expected first-quarter loss of 8 cents per share and met its anticipated subscriber growth. The quarterly loss is Netflix’s first in the last seven years. Read more »


Rich Ross was hired by Disney’s film studio 30 months ago to transition over the multi-platform digital-marketing success he’d experienced at the Disney Channel with programs like High School Musical. But he couldn’t overcome mega-flops like Mars Needs Moms and John Carter From Mars. Read more »

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