NHL rights: NBC’s out, Turner’s in

Surprise bid from WarnerMedia subsidiary ends NBC’s 16-year run In a surprise no one saw coming, WarnerMedia’s Turner Sports skated away with the remaining NHL package in a deal officially announced Tuesday by outbidding NBCUniversal and Fox Sports, one of two put up for bids recently by the league with ESPN and ABC acquiring the other portion several weeks ago.  […]

The NHL returns to ESPN in a blockbuster deal

Seven-year deal brings the league back to the Worldwide Leader In Sports In news certain to please hockey fans across the United States, the NHL officially announced its return to ESPN on Wednesday after seventeen years. This came as the league decided to split its television rights package with two different partners as opposed to one media outfit – in […]

Dear NFL…Stop putting the Bears in prime-time

The league deserves its ratings losses from dumb scheduling decisions I’m trying to figure out who the hell runs the NFL. Is it Rob Manfred or Roger Goodell? It’s hard to tell these days given both are as popular as a bag of brussels sprouts.  But I imagine the league – who decided to plow through the regular season during […]

Media Notepad: WLIT now in Christmas music mode

Also: Fox News wins election night; NBA season to start Dec. 22 IHeartMedia’s WLIT launched its Holly Jolly format (or Christmas music as everyone else calls it) starting at 4 p.m. Friday, and is likely to last through the end of the year. This is the 20th year WLIT has turned its playlist to a Christmas Jukebox, playing Mariah Carey’s […]

T Dog’s Think Tank: Voters lose as networks schedule dueling town halls

  ABC and NBC schedule Presidential town halls opposite each other as ratings dictate decisions instead of common sense   NBC’s decision to schedule a President Trump town hall opposite Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is so ridiculous, it’s hard to explain. A second Presidential debate was supposed to take place tonight between Trump and Biden. But Trump tested positive for […]

“30 Rock” reunion special faces affiliate resistance (updated)

Chicago viewers will get to see Liz Lemon & Co. reunite. Outside of Chicago? It depends on where your live – and who owns your NBC station. [Updated Thursday at 4:25 p.m.]  Are you excited about the 30 Rock reunion Thursday night? If you live outside of the Chicago area, you might have to delay your enthusiasm until Friday morning […]

T Dog’s Think Tank: Diversity matters

In the aftermath of George Floyd’s untimely death, the world is calling for reform – and the media business must follow the lead [Editor’s Note: This post was updated on July 1 and on December 1.] As one of the few African-Americans who writes a media blog, for years I’ve been pushing for more diversity in the media business, whether […]

Legendary network executive Fred Silverman dies

Career spanned ABC, CBS, NBC plus his own production company Media watchers are mourning the death of Fred Silverman, an executive who re-invented CBS and took ABC to the top, and later formed his own production company. Born in the Queens borough of New York, Silverman began his career right here in Chicago at WGN-TV in the early 1960s where […]

Bears bomb on field again, draws mixed ratings results for “Sunday Night Football”

Local fans tuned out, but telecast still drew 17 million viewers nationwide (Editor’s Note: This post has been updated with new ratings information.) The Bears’ home finale drew some interest, if not overwhelming. The Sunday Night Football matchup between Chicago’s NFL Lakefront Team and the Kansas City Chiefs drew a 22.3 household local overnight rating over NBC-owned WMAQ-TV according to […]

The Media Notepad: Marquee’s future getting on Dish looks very bleak

Also: Big 3 add overnight news repeats; Fox renews three daytime shows; Disney + signs ten million users; two prime-shows pink-slipped We have an update on the latest with the Cubs’ new Marquee Network and Dish…and I’m guessing those negotiations aren’t going well. In an interview with the Tribune’s Eric Zorn (a rather pointed opinion piece urging Dish not to […]

Broadcasters, cable news networks prepare for impeachment hearings

Viewers, syndicators prepare for regular daytime TV schedules to be disrupted (Editor’s Note: This post will be continuously updated with any information on who is carrying the impeachment hearings. – T.H.)  If you are a fan of daytime TV, get ready for a serious reality check. Beginning Wednesday, the major broadcast networks and cable news channels will begin carrying impeachment […]

The Media Notepad: Chicago stations cover teachers’ strike

Also: NBC pulls two shows – but one is moving to digital. Fox 32 downgrades local show; Bless The Harts renewed for season two To say Chicago stations had a busy week is quite an understatement: in addition to reminding viewers (constantly) about re-scanning their sets, news stations were covering the second Chicago Public School Teachers strike in the last […]

Bears blow out competition – on the field and off

Bears, Truibsky cream Redskins, Dancing, and that Bob show  The 2019-20 television season is officially underway, but Chicagoans weren’t ready for the new shows….they were ready for Mitch Trubisky. The Chicago Bears thrashed the Washington Redskins on Monday night Football 31-15, with the Bears offense – struggling as of late – put up 28 points in the first half and […]

Bears bomb on field, but NFL Kickoff is a ratings success

Ratings up 14 percent despite downer of a game The NFL’s 100th season kicked off Thursday with the oldest, most storied rivalry in the league: The Green Bay Packers playing the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. But the results on the field were anything but grand as the Bears lost to the Packers 10-3 in a lackluster game panned on […]