The Media Notepad: Bears don’t deliver for Amazon Prime

Also: prime-time’s future debated; Pluto takes streaming lead  You wonder if Amazon has a return policy for defective football games: Much like the teams on the field, the October 13 edition of Prime Video’s Thursday Night Football was completely forgettable. The newly renamed Washington Commanders played the Chicago Bears on a 40-degree night and viewers figured the game between two […]

The Media Notepad: WGN-TV scores ratings win in gubernatorial debates

Pritzker, Bailey showdown tops time slot in viewers, demos  Chicago viewers obviously love their politics: according to Nielsen in a press release from Nexstar’s WGN-TV, the first of two Illinois gubernatorial debates between incumbent Democrat J.B. Pritzker and Republican Darren Bailey was a big local ratings hit on October 6, winning the 7-8 p.m. time period with an exact total […]

The Media Notepad: The Chicago Sun-Times drops its paywall

Also: The Drive promotes Janda Lane to middays; Nexstar closes the deal to buy The CW; NATPE files for bankruptcy; Svengoolie is hiring! The move was expected for months, and now it’s official: The Chicago Sun-Times announced Thursday it is removing the paywall for all stories. This comes as the newspaper and Chicago Public Media’s WBEZ-FM announced a non-profit merger […]

The Media Notepad: Fox 32 gets Amazon Thursday night Bears game – report (updated)

Also: local Atlanta station removes popular syndicated show to air more news; controversial political ad removed from local airwaves; the GOP looking to deregulate the media business even more; Ramsey Lewis dies [Editor’s Note: There is an update to the second story in this piece. See below.] Thursday Night Football may have left Fox, but its owned stations certainly haven’t […]

Digital divide could hamper streaming growth

  Low-income Chicago neighborhoods, suburbs lag behind [Editor’s Note: This story was updated on July 19th with a response from AT&T over accusations of digital redling.]  With Dancing With The Stars and Thursday Night Football – two long-time broadcast programs moving to streaming this fall, it signaled something we knew for years – television is shifting to a streaming model […]

The NFL completes media deals

Blockbuster pacts include new deals for streaming Just a week after the NHL announced a return to ESPN/ABC, the NFL announced Thursday it completed its television deals.  While nothing really earth-shattering (Fox stunning the world in 1994 by grabbing the NFL from CBS or Monday Night Football moving to cable), the new deals does send a message – streamers have […]

Bears-Cowboys a hit for Thursday Night Football

But local ratings down from last prime-time outing  The last time the Chicago Bears faced the Dallas Cowboys at Soldier Field on Thursday Night Football, the game aired only on NFL Network, was on opposite a live production of Peter Pan, and protesters denouncing the police shootings of Eric Gardner and Michael Brown were marching on Lake Shore Drive (Chicago’s […]

Thursday ratings roundup: NFL wins, but cable news is the real winner

Kavanaugh-Ford hearings draw 20 million viewers in daytime; cable news networks benefit The big ratings story yesterday didn’t take place in primetime. Live coverage of The Kavanaugh hearings at the Senate Judiciary Committee drew an average of 20.4 million viewers across six networks Thursday between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. according to Nielsen. The cable news networks drew the biggest […]

NBC makes changes to Tuesday, Thursday fall lineups

This Is Us remains on Tuesday; new Will & Grace avoids showdown with Big Bang Theory The month of June hasn’t arrived yet, and we already have our first change in the 2017 fall schedule. NBC announced Tuesday it was keeping This Is Us in its regular Tuesday slot after all, keeping it as a lead-out of The Voice. Meanwhile, […]

“Young Sheldon” is CBS’ centerpiece for 2017-18 season

CBS announces new schedule in front of buyers CBS held its 2017-18 upfront presentation Wednesday and announced its new schedule in front of ad buyers, and made a case for why the network is the “most watched in America”. CBS CEO Les Moonves addressed attendees at an upfronts breakfast Wednesday morning, subbing in for network president Glenn Geller, who is […]

Tough night for network TV

Unless you’re CBS After three nights of momentum, network TV slid off the rails Thursday as two programs’ premieres underwhelmed. For the record, real-life events had an effect on TV schedules – police protests in Charlotte were covered on cable news networks and spurred pre-emptions on several Charlotte TV stations; and here in Chicago, where Mayor Rahm Emanuel gave a […]

“The Wiz Live” scores with critics, fans

Dusting off an old New York area- electronic store slogan from the 1990’s, Nobody Beats The Wiz – at least when it comes to entertainment programming. And that was more than true Thursday night when as the NBC live presentation of the Broadway Musical drew strong ratings – even opposite a special edition of Thursday Night Football. In metered overnight […]

CBS unveils new 2015-16 season schedule

CBS announces seven new series – five for fall CBS announced its new 2015-16 season lineup for next season, with the network renewing 22 programs and bringing on seven new series – five of which will debut in the fall. Here’s the night-by-night throwdown: – Monday: Once again, Thursday Night Football is forcing some temporary changes, with The Big Bang […]

How to get away with a hit show

Viola Davis and her students murder the competition The good news continued to roll on for the broadcast networks (except Fox) in the young television season thus far with ABC scoring a hat trick victory last night among entertainment fare, led by the successful premiere of How To Get Away With Murder. The debut of the Shonda Rhimes-produced show drew […]

Rihanna rips into The Church Of Tisch

It looks like Rihanna has run afoul of The Church Of Tisch. The award-winning singer wasn’t happy about CBS pulling her cover of Jay-Z’s Run This Town from the intro of Thursday Night Football telecast last week, a game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens due to the toned-down atmosphere after the Ray Rice scandal. And so she sent this not-so-nice […]