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TV & Media Non-Trek television, movies, books, music, etc.

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Old December 17 2011, 04:18 AM   #1
Caliburn24
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Location: Gig Harbor, Washington
Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

People are trying to deregulate US television?

Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) and Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) apparently think so based on the cable- and satellite-friendly bill they submitted today called the Next Generation Television Marketplace Act. It would end retransmission consent — the rules that require pay TV providers to negotiate deals with local broadcasters to carry their programming. It doesn’t stop there: The proposal also would end restrictions that enable syndicators to sell shows exclusively into different markets. And it would scrap rules that bar cable companies from importing network programming from out-of-market stations when they can’t strike deals with local broadcasters. DeMint used the trendy magic words — “job creation” — to support the bill. To promote innovation, he says, “we need to stop issuing new regulations and instead remove and modernize rules written to address the last century’s business and regulatory models.” DirecTV agrees, saying that the proposal would “eliminate byzantine regulations that shackle innovation, competition and consumer choice.”

But when it comes to wielding political clout, the bill’s supporters probably are no match for the National Association of Broadcasters which says it “respectfully” opposes the legislation. “Current law ensures access to quality local news, entertainment, sports and life-saving weather warnings. The proposed changes to the Communications Act strike at the core of free market negotiations and broadcast localism, thereby threatening a community-based information and entertainment medium that serves tens of millions of Americans each day.”
http://www.deadline.com/2011/12/is-c...te-television/

Not being in the television business or really having an understanding of the mechanics at play, I haven't picked a side in this fight.

So I ask you fine folks, which side should the average TV viewer support and why? Because I have no idea.
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Old December 18 2011, 12:25 AM   #2
Temis the Vorta
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

The clue to what this means is in who's supporting and opposing it. DirectTV likes it, so it's good for cable. The National Association of Broadcasters doesn't like it, so it's bad for broadcast.

I don't think I care either way. There's almost nothing worth watching on broadcast now, so how much worse can it get? The internet is going to kill TV as we know it anyway.
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Old December 18 2011, 01:06 AM   #3
Mr. Adventure
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

I'll admit I don't fully grasp all of this bu if it let's them bypass local broadcasters I could see how that could ease the bottom line for cable/satellite providers but I doubt that would help with "job creation" (whatever spin doctor came up with that deserve a bonus).
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Old December 18 2011, 02:04 AM   #4
C.E. Evans
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

It does seem to be something that benefits cable and satellite providers and screws local broadcast stations as far as their current bargaining power goes. Can't see how local stations won't fight this tooth and nail because it would give cable and satellite companies the right to bypass local stations and make deals with non-local "super" stations (an example might be if I live in St. Louis, my CBS programming might come from their Chicago affiliate if my cable company can't make a deal with the St. Louis CBS affiliate).

In such a setup, I probably wouldn't have my CBS programming interrupted by local weather alerts and onscreen clutter during inclement weather. But then I also wouldn't know if there was a tornado heading down my street either unless there was some other means to get local weather...
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Old December 18 2011, 03:13 AM   #5
Caliburn24
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

I wonder how this would effect syndication of certain TV shows. I know the old broadcast model is that shows need 88 episodes or more to really be seen as profitable in syndication.

If 88 is not some magical number anymore for broadcasters wouldn't that create less pressure for network shows to churn out 20+ episodes a season?

It would be interesting if US series went to shorter(generally tighter) seasons similar to British TV.
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Old December 18 2011, 07:16 AM   #6
Mr. Adventure
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

^ I think those numbers are just based on what is needed to run a show 5 days a week without repeats. You sometimes hear 65 eps which would be 1/4 year = 13 weeks * 5 eps. The number you list would be 1/3 year = 17ish weeks * 5 eps = ~85 eps. I don't think those numbers change based on who's broadcasting them.
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Old December 18 2011, 09:44 PM   #7
Temis the Vorta
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

Is syndication really that important anymore? Everyone can get old episodes on DVD/streaming, so who needs reruns?
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Old December 19 2011, 05:56 AM   #8
Caliburn24
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

To we the consumers it is not terribly important.

To the producers it is still enormously important.

Example, NBC's Community may get a forth season mostly so that it has enough episodes for syndication.

Most TV shows get more expensive from season to season as cast salaries and other production costs increase. Without the bonus cash that a lucrative syndication deal brings in long running US shows would be much more prone to cancellation.

Which may or may not be a bad thing.
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Old December 19 2011, 06:11 AM   #9
ATimson
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

Caliburn24 wrote: View Post
So I ask you fine folks, which side should the average TV viewer support and why? Because I have no idea.
I'm in favor of the act, personally. I don't see why local channels should be a government-mandated single source for network programming; let them win the bid for it instead.

(Or lose, hopefully. I don't want local weather warnings or "breaking news" I don't care about, so if they could just go to a raw network feed I'd be extremely pleased.)
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Old December 19 2011, 04:11 PM   #10
Mr. Adventure
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

^ You'll probably get weather alerts from Anchorage, Alaska or wherever instead.
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Old December 21 2011, 03:14 AM   #11
The Borgified Corpse
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

I can't say this will affect me too much. I rarely watch live TV any more. When I do, it's usually just for something to have on in the background and it's often from these new mini-networks that don't include any local programming like Qubo & THiS. Now, if this ends up forcing a bunch of free broadcast TV stations out of business altogether, I'll be pissed off. But if it just means that we'll be seeing less local content, I doubt I'll care. Local TV stations haven't created anything of merit since Mystery Science Theater 3000.

I suppose the weather warnings might matter more to people who live in more inclement areas than I do. Hardly any weather events of any note ever occur in the Phoenix area. (At worst, we'll get a mysterious, rare case of water falling from the sky! But I've found that if I go inside, it eventually stops.)
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Old December 21 2011, 03:33 PM   #12
23skidoo
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

Vorta Claus wrote: View Post
Is syndication really that important anymore? Everyone can get old episodes on DVD/streaming, so who needs reruns?
Also, to be honest, with the exception of niche cable networks, the average "on the street" TV stations aren't bothering that much with syndication anymore. Time was entire afternoons and late night schedules were filled with old sitcoms, action shows like Star Trek and Six Million Dollar Man, etc. These days first priority are infomercials, and if they do bother to buy syndicated reruns, it's usually one of about 3 or 4 shows - Simpsons, Friends, and one or two others. Usually shown 2 times a day.

I gave up on "on the street" TV stations being any good for syndication once a multicultural station opened in my city, and instead of running, say, imported Japanese TV shows in their non-prime time hours they booked The Simpsons, Two and a Half Men, etc. Waste of time.

Part of it I think is due to the fact if someone wants to see an older show, they can either do so on demand, or buy the DVD. There are exceptions of course, as anyone waiting for seasons 2 onwards of Crossing Jordan, or the 1960s Batman to hit DVD can tell you. And sometimes DVD releases are crap, like WKRP sans music.

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Old December 21 2011, 04:47 PM   #13
Peach Wookiee
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Re: Next Generation Television Marketplace Act

I've been watching 1960s Batman on MeTV lately.
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