March 27, 2013 |
One of the longest-serving chief executives in the media industry is stepping down. Frank A. Bennack Jr., chief executive of Hearst Corp. since 1979, will give up that title in June. Steven Swartz, currently president and chief operating officer, will become CEO. Bennack will remain vice chairman of the Hearst Board. Although best known for its magazine unit, which includes Cosmopolitan and Esquire, Hearst also has a major presence in the TV industry. It owns stakes in several powerful cable networks including ESPN, A&E, History and Lifetime.
February 13, 2014 |
Comcast's blockbuster deal to buy Time Warner Cable has ignited speculation among Wall Street analysts about further consolidation in the media industry. Investors have long anticipated merger agreements between Dish and DirecTV on the satellite side, as well as Sprint and T-Mobile on the wireless service provider side, and are now pondering what's next. The deal also raises questions about future moves by Cox Communications and the jilted Charter Communications, which was in the process of its own takeover attempt of Time Warner Cable.
October 15, 2012 |
Lions Gate Chief Executive Jon Feltheimer is urging people in the media industry to play nice with each other. In a speech Monday to cable industry executives in Orlando, Fla., Feltheimeier warned that while "the marriage of content, technology and choice offers an unprecedented experience of our consumers," all that will be wasted if big media companies can't get along. "We can screw it up when all the constituents in our business are so focused on their narrow agendas that they can't work together to look at the big picture," Feltheimer said at the Cable & Telecommunications Assn.
January 11, 2013 |
Sen. Jay Rockefeller's announcement that he won't seek reelection in 2014 may not upset too many folks in the entertainment business. The Democrat from West Virginia and chairman of the powerful Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee has never been shy about bashing the media industry. Last fall at a confirmation hearing for two nominees for the Federal Communications Commission, Rockefeller said that television news has been "dumbed down" and that entertainment programming was too too "obscene" and "promiscuous.
November 19, 2003 |
As Congress winds down for the year, time is running short for efforts to roll back media ownership rules that were relaxed this summer by the Federal Communications Commission. Opponents of increased media consolidation, including some influential Republican lawmakers, are vowing to repeal one of the most controversial new FCC rules as part of a massive appropriations bill expected to be passed later this week.
October 16, 2012 |
The main problem with owning a network that specializes in 3D is that there isn't a ton of 3D programming around to fill the schedule. With that in mind, 3Net -- the 3D cable channel owned by Sony, Discovery and IMAX -- have created an in-house production company to make original 3D content. “With the industry now struggling to keep pace with the rapidly accelerating consumer demand for 3D programming across multiple platforms...the formation of a world-class production studio to help fill both the 3D and ultra-high-definition content voids became a logical next step in our evolution as a global player in the entertainment arena,” said Tom Cosgrove, president of 3Net.
November 4, 2013 |
New Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler has tapped one of the media industry's fiercest watchdogs for a senior role on his team. Gigi Sohn, who has headed the nonprofit advocacy group Public Knowledge for 12 years, is joining Wheeler's staff as special counsel for external affairs. The appointment of Sohn is sure to raise eyebrows in some circles. She has been a critic of media consolidation, and her views on copyright protection are often at odds with those of the entertainment industry.
December 10, 2005 |
At least two potential buyers made preliminary bids Friday to acquire Knight Ridder Inc., the country's second-largest newspaper chain, according to three people familiar with the discussions. Among those submitting offers by the first-round deadline were investment firm Texas Pacific Group and an alliance of private equity investors Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., Blackstone Group and Providence Equity Partners, the people said.
November 12, 2013 |
Sen. Jay D. Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.), chairman of the powerful Commerce Committee, is introducing a bill aimed at giving a boost to new digital video services that are trying to compete against established pay-television distributors. The Consumer Choice in Online Video Act looks to do for online video services -- known in the media industry as over the top, or OTT -- what the 1992 Cable Act did for the satellite television industry by making sure it has access to programming. "Evidence is growing that some traditional media and broadband companies are attempting to discourage the growth of online video platforms through various anti-competitive practices," said an announcement detailing Rockefeller's bill.
September 15, 2006 |
A former Federal Communications Commission attorney said the agency, in its push to let media companies own more television stations, killed a 2004 study that showed that locally owned TV outlets broadcast more local news because the outcome conflicted with its own agenda. "The initial results were very compelling, and it was just stopped in its tracks because it was not the way the agency wanted to go," said Adam Candeub, an assistant law professor at Michigan State University.