Friday, January 19, 2007

HARBERT -- Nets Need To Rethink Biz

(From The Hollywood Reporter -- By Kimberly Nordyke)

The broadcast networks need to rethink their traditional programming model, COMCAST ENTERTAINMENT GROUP President and CEO TED HARBERT told NATPE attendees Wednesday morning during a "Coffee With" session at the MANDALAY BAY.

Harbert, a former head of ABC ENTERTAINMENT and
NBC STUDIOS, said the way that broadcast networks continue to do business needs to be "re-examined."

He pointed out that the networks are spending hundreds of millions of dollars to make pilots that will be presented as short clips to advertisers at the spring upfronts even though "we know that buyers don't buy off clips, they have to watch the shows."

Harbert, who oversees E! ENTERTAINMENT TELEVISION, STYLE NETWORK and G4, called it "silly" to keep working
to fill a 22-hour primetime schedule, saying that broadcast should take a page from cable's book when it comes to scheduling.

"There's no rule that says they need to make that much television. We'll take a show and put it on Sunday night and (repeat it) Tuesday night and Thursday night -- we call ourselves AUTO-TIVO -- if you don't see it Sunday, you can see it Thursday," he said.

"A few broadcast networks are doing that, taking Saturday night and repeating dramas, and people say, 'How can you do that?' But they have to -- they aren't making money.
(CBS CORP.'s) LES MOONVES is the only guy making money."

Harbert -- Nets Need To Rethink Biz

John Santamaria, thanks for the post.

[Do viewers really want less shows, more repeats and lower production quality?]

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