Media Business

By Mark Finkelstein | May 19, 2015 | 9:25 AM EDT

Did Joe Scarborough just suggest that the suits at his own network are craven cowards who put bucks over ethics?

On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough predicted that if Matt Lauer had pulled a Stephanopoulos, NBC would hesitate to punish him [just as ABC hasn't disciplined Steph], because Lauer's morning Today show "is where they make the money."

By Tom Blumer | April 24, 2015 | 2:36 PM EDT

Rush Limbaugh posted an interesting pair of questions at his web site yesterday: "How can CNN still be on the air with no audience? How can MSNBC have been on the air with no audience? In the old days, they're gone, kaput. Something else is tried. But they stay. And they double down on what they're doing that's losing audience."

A large part of the answer, as I noted on March 30, is that those two networks apparently have suffered very little financially as they have lost audience. That's because, as is apparently the case with most of the major cable channels, their primary source of revenue comes from "subscriptions," also referred to as "carriage fees" or "license fee revenues." In plain English, cable channels get paid a great deal of money even if nobody watches them, and don't benefit as much as would be expected when their audience grows.

By Ken Shepherd | April 23, 2015 | 4:12 PM EDT

This Friday, April 24, will mark 100 years since the beginning of the Armenian genocide at the hands of the Ottoman government in what is present-day Turkey. The Washington Post apparently saw it a fitting occasion to accept a full-page A-section advertisement by an organization which essentially denies the holocaust of millions of Armenians by the Turks.

By Jeffrey Lord | April 18, 2015 | 11:06 PM EDT

Will they just stand there and take it? Or will the Republican candidates for president push back against the fawning media coverage of Hillary Clinton?

By Ann Coulter | April 16, 2015 | 6:44 PM EDT

Usually liberals have the decency to wait a few months after one of their rape fantasies collapses to start citing the case as "unresolved" -- it was a tie, the game was rained out, we'll never know what happened. But with the apocryphal University of Virginia gang rape, lefties started in right away with the "I guess we'll never know what happened" rewrite.   

By Tom Johnson | April 11, 2015 | 11:33 PM EDT

Esquire’s Pierce considers the web site/newspaper Politico an embarrassment to journalism (he habitually refers to it as “Tiger Beat on the Potomac”). Recently, Pierce found more fuel for his ire, a Politico story that to his disgust 1) merely hinted, rather than stated, that Scott Walker is an “unprincipled scoundrel,” and 2) virtually endorsed Walker’s “fundamental mendacity” as long as it’s effective -- in other words, if it helps him to “lie his way into the presidency.”

Pierce added that Walker’s shiftiness won’t matter to the GOP base, which “is filled with crazoids, Bible-bangers, and people with short-wave radios for brains. All they know is that Walker knuckled all the people of whom The Base is terrified. The only way Walker's bone-deep dishonesty can hurt him is if the people who stoke the plutocratic engine of the party believe that it might make him a loser. So far, they seem quite happy with the way he's done business for them.”

By Melissa Mullins | March 16, 2015 | 6:08 PM EDT

Sharyl Attkisson, the former CBS investigative reporter whose book Stonewalled exposed liberal bias, has been no wallflower when it comes to speaking out about the kind of standards (or lack thereof) seen in journalism today.

In former NBC reporter Lisa Myers, she finds a kindred spirit. On Friday, she wrote “Lisa Myers sounds like me. She is also a former network news investigative journalist. She left her longtime job at NBC about the time I left my longtime job at CBS. To me, it is interesting that some of our experiences and thoughts are so similar.”

By Tim Graham | February 28, 2015 | 8:48 PM EST

The front page of Friday’s Washington Post wasn’t at all objective about the FCC’s imposition of a “net neutrality” regime. The headline was “FCC makes Internet history: PROVIDERS DEEMED PUBLIC UTILITIES / New regulations aim to keep Web fair and open.”

The same thing happened on the cover of the Post’s Express tabloid, where liberal HBO host John Oliver was honored. “Net hero: The FCC’s ruling to protect Internet speeds might have gone the other way if comic John Oliver hadn’t helped spark mass outrage.”

By Tim Graham | December 29, 2014 | 5:00 PM EST

MSNBC boss Phil Griffin has sent around a memo to staff admitting the obvious: that 2014 was a very difficult year for MSNBC. But he blames technological change -- not the rejection of the MSNBC agenda at the polls. America is "leaning backward" at the moment. 

“It’s no secret that 2014 was a difficult year for the entire cable news industry and especially for MSNBC,” Griffin wrote. “Technology is continuing to drive unprecedented changes across the media landscape – and we all should be taking a hard, honest look at how we need to evolve along with it.”

By Gerardo Abascal | December 18, 2014 | 11:42 AM EST

This past Nov. 28, legendary Mexican comedian Roberto Gómez Bolaños, creator and protagonist of several television comedy series enjoyed for decades throughout the Spanish-speaking world, died at age 85. 

As to be expected, Univision, the leading Spanish-language television network in the United States, featured the news of Gómez Bolaños, better known as “Chespirito”, prominently as the lead story of its flagship newscast that day. But Chespirito’s passing wasn’t only the lead story on Nov. 28. It was the ONLY story during the entire Noticiero Univision broadcast, not only on the day of his passing, but on Nov. 29 and Nov. 30 as well. 

By Kyle Drennen | November 18, 2014 | 3:36 PM EST

In a Tuesday article, Baltimore Sun media critic David Zurawik examined the reason behind Fox News beating every other TV news outlet in the ratings – including NBC, ABC and CBS – during November 4 midterm election coverage: "...it's time to think seriously about what that says about Fox, CNN, MSNBC, the state of network news today and the role TV plays or doesn't play in providing us with reliable, trustworthy information."

By Mark Finkelstein | October 24, 2014 | 9:16 PM EDT

"Well, it is Friday night."  That was Al Sharpton's sheepish way of excusing the not-suitable-for-network-TV line that a guest had just uttered on this evening's Politics Nation.  Australian satirist Josh Zepps' zinger came during a discussion of a video ad in which young girls drop repeated f-bombs, supposedly in furtherance of feminism.

The ad was produced by a clothing company trying to cash in with t-shirts bearing PC messages against sexism and racism.  Zinged Zepps: "I'm offended by the shamelessness of the cheap ploy of the people that got them to do it  . . . There's something about this company that rubs me the wrong way. They sell t-shirts for men that say 'This is What a Feminist Looks Like.'" Read the racy rest of Zepps' comment after the jump.