Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

(from Magid Morning Facts Email)

A total of 409 scripted TV series (drama, comedy, and limited) aired on all broadcast, cable, streaming and OTT services in 2015, according to Julie Piepenkotter, executive vice president of research for FX Networks. (Excluded from the tally: reality, news, sports, made-for-television movies, specials, daytime and children’s programming.)

Even if you binge-watched one scripted season every day of the year, you wouldn’t be able to get through all the available content.

“The unprecedented increase in the number of scripted series has reached a new milestone in 2015 with a record 409, nearly doubling the total in just the past six years,” said Piepenkotter in a statement. “This was the third consecutive year that scripted series count has grown across each distribution platform — broadcast, basic and pay cable, streaming — led by significant gains in basic cable and digital services. This statistic is staggering and almost unimaginable from where they were a decade ago.”

The number represents a 9 percent increase over 2014, which had 376 scripted series, and a staggering 94 percent jump since 2009 (211). During that six-year period, the number of scripted series on basic cable has jumped 174 percent from 66 to 181.
Broadcasting & Cable

Best Book Ever

Posted: December 15, 2015 in Uncategorized

Satire is a time-honored tradition here in the US of A.  But it’s rare when we get a chance to commit it using only the words of the target.   This hysterical book starts by making you laugh and ends by leaving you terrified. 51vgo+0nNLL._SX340_BO1,204,203,200_

Author Carol Pogash, a frequent New York Times Contributor,  has captured the terrifying essence of Mr. Trump with a series of incredible comments that have captured the attention of a significant number of people who would like to see his entertaining road show roll its proverbial RV right in to the White House driveway and park.

Carol Pogash is a serious journalist who wanted to get out front of the Trump Tsunami by merely pointing out what the candidate has said, over and over again.  He is clearly not being muzzled — yet.   When the Republican party decides what they don’t want to stand for ….they will face a difficult task in trying to control the man who said all this.


This is a little hard to explain, but I just have to try.  I am trying to buy a brand new Iphone5, and pay FULL price for it because my Verizon Wireless plan still has 6 months left on it.   But neither Apple nor Verizon will sell it to me.  

Despite the fact that they would be getting the highest price possible for the device, both online stores AND customer service personnel for both companies were unable to take my money for a new phone.Image

In the case of Apple, because I had a plan that didn’t qualify for an Upgrade, their system kicked me back because selling me a phone without a plan was the same as selling an “unlocked” phone that could be used on several systems and their contracts with their partners don’t let them sell unlocked phones.

In the case of Verizon, their system just simply would not let me enter an order because I was not qualified for a subsidized upgrade.  Believe it or not, if you are NOT going to take a discount, their system would not let you buy the phone at top dollar.  The site first checks for you discount when you put in your phone number, and when you don’t get a discount it just says “Cannot Upgrade,” and adds the words “No change” when you try to click through for an order anyway.

In fact, the only opportunity I had to buy the phone from either Verizon or Apple, was if I was willing to take a new phone number and open a new account.  But after about 20 years I just didn’t feel like changing my phone number.

Maybe these guys are just saving me from myself.


There are many new devices included in our new beta website at USA Today. But one of the coolest is something we call “Cover View”. It lets you scan the stories of the day one page at a time, but with just a headline and a single photo dominating that page. It’s a fantastic showcase for photography, and a very different and new way to scan the news. Try it at

Posted: May 1, 2012 in Uncategorized

One of Journalism’s Most Important Paths For The Future


One of the big areas of focus for technology companies over the past year has been “big data” — in other words, the idea that there can be a lot of value in finding patterns in the massive quantities of user data and other information that a business generates. This has a corollary in journalism too: namely, the growing realization that there is a lot of value in finding patterns in news-related information. This weekend saw the launch of an e-book that could be a useful resource for anyone planning to explore that field: The Data Journalism Handbook.

Released at the 2012 International Journalism Festival in Italy, the handbook is a collection of testimonials, tips and in-depth case studies about data-oriented journalism — and fittingly enough, the information was crowdsourced from dozens of leading practitioners of the craft, from the BBC and the Financial Times to the

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It was a great New Year’s gift.

I was at our home in California this week and looking forward to watching my alma mater, Syracuse, play DePaul in basketball on New Years Day. The Orange are undefeated and the number one team in the country this year, and despite my brutal travel schedule and the fact that we are splitting our time between San Francisco and New York City, I’ve had the opportunity over one form of media or another, to watch most of their first 14 games live on TV, a computer, my IPad or my IPhone.

This time I was really looking forward to seeing the game on our big screen TV at home. Even though the game was scheduled on ESPN3, the digital channel available on the internet, I had purchased the pay-per-view package on Comcast’s Xfinity Service that was also carrying the game on cable.

But when I sat down to watch the game at 2pm on New Years day, all I could get was a notice on the screen saying the game would be available soon, and a useless code number.

I called Comcast, which is normally pretty responsive to my calls.

First, whatever choices I made on their infuriating automated call system only got me to a tape that their offices were closed for the holidays. Then, after altering my selections to “technical” difficulties I was able, after 15 minutes (the game was 10 minutes in at this point) to find an agent who was very nice and tried to help me. After several restarts of my system and long pauses while she spoke to co-workers, presumably about my problems, the game finally reached half time (nearly an hour on the phone) before she gave up trying to get this pay service started on cable box. After talking to various people she also came back to tell me there was no such game on the schedule (it was on the on-screen guide in great detail) and then that maybe it was on the schedule but she couldn’t explain why they couldn’t start it..they were able to take my money for the special package, but couldn’t seem to deliver me the content. She seemed as frustrated as I was and was trying to be helpful. Ultimately, all she could do was schedule a service call for later this week.

This would have been a totally infurating process had I not decided (about 15 minutes into the game) to check to see if I was able to get the game on my Ipad via ESPNWatch, a service I get because I’m an ESPN subscriber on Time Warner Cable in NYC and Comcast in San Francisco.

Sure enough, I found the game on my IPad and watched the last 2/3rds of it while waiting for it to appear on my TV. Ironically, if I had the right wire attachments, I could have ported the game from my IPad onto the TV and watched it, with no commercials!, on the big screen.

So despite my frustration with Comcast’s inability to delivery their own service, I still had access to the event. While I still wanted to see it on my big screen, I had found an alternative that wasn’t available to me until this year.

What will it mean for next year, when I’m deciding whether or not to add the extra sports package to my Xfinity service from Comcast?

Take a guess.

Now THIS is Convergence

Posted: November 22, 2011 in Uncategorized

You gotta love this. Picked it up at sports site SBNation in a blog item from Jason Kirk. It’s the ultimate use of old media to promote new to drive engagement! Go Mississippi State!