Skip to comments.Networks reluctantly shuffle for Obama speech
Posted on 03/19/2009 7:45:38 AM PDT by Dr. Zzyzx
Networks reluctantly shuffle for Obama speech
Networks are pulling their shows over to the side of the road to make room for the lights and sirens of president Barack Obama's latest primetime address.
Obama will take to the air next Tuesday evening on four broadcast networks and bump the most popular series on television, Fox's "American Idol."
Fulfilling their scheduling civic duty is starting to seem increasingly cumbersome to broadcasters, however. Between a struggling economy and ratings sagging in midseason, every interruption costs networks advertising dollars and momentum.
"At a time when we're struggling not only financially but to build audiences, this doesn't help on either front," one network executive said. "These repeated interruptions -- and the rumor of even more to come -- really make it difficult to build audience flow and loyalty. We will all lose one or two million dollars for this."
The presidential election resulted in a fall season regularly interrupted by political news coverage, followed by primetime inauguration coverage, then two primetime speeches about the economy. The White House requesting yet another primetime slot, during sweeps and right after several shows dropped to new lows in last night's ratings, has some executives exasperated.
"I believe in the president and his policies, and as broadcasters we have a responsibility to provide the airtime," said another network insider. "But these frequent primetime requests are wreaking serious havoc with our schedule and our advertisers. Ratings are down everywhere and the airtime is costing us all significant dollars when we can least afford it."
Here's how the Big Four will juggle the speech:
>> Fox is arguably the most impacted network and took the longest to agree to airing the speech. The network will move Tuesday's two-hour performance episode of "Idol" to Wednesday, and the Wednesday episode to Thursday at 8 p.m. That preempts "Lie to Me" and "Bones" and puts mega-rated "Idol" against the mega-rated NCAA finals (which neither Fox nor CBS are all that thrilled about).
>> NBC will move Tuesday's two-hour "Biggest Loser" to 9 p.m., preempting "Law & Order: SVU."
>> CBS likewise is dumping its 10 p.m. procedural ("Without a Trace") and moving its two earlier dramas, "NCIS" and "The Mentalist," forward an hour.
>> ABC will cancel previously planned back-to-back episodes of "According to Jim."
Why don’t they grow a pair and tell him to go stuff it?
Honestly they could just put the text on the screen and scroll it since all he’s going to do is read the darn thing anyway. LOSER
Here is what I posted to “The Hollywood Reporter” and the author of their article
I want to hear what the President has to say, like any other American. However, he seems to have become a daily show and we hear from him constantly.
To the point of your article, the last couple of strikes and the havoc they played on scheduling for programs that were very popular combined with the many interruptions to programming, I have begun to just skip TV.
I am just spending more doing other things as the TV cannot be depended on the deliver regularly scheduled programming. Heck, one show, The Unit, is supposed to air on Sundays. Well, why make popcorn when the show is rarely on. Desperate Housewives was on and then they had a strike and I could not figure when they were going to be on. This reminds me of the Sopranos who would skip seasons
It is becoming clear that having brand new flat screen TV and paying for cable to receive programming is not such a good value, since no one can figure scheduling. And, dont buy into DVRs are playing havoc with the networks. We still schedule time to sit and watch programs.
With the President having so many news conferences, pre-empting scheduling and the inability of the networks to provide a consistent schedule I just watch less TV.
The news conference will likely interrupt Dancing with the Stars as well.
Anyway, you probably receive a million letters. Just thought you might encapsulate this to the big wigs at the networks.
I agree with Mrs. Rightly Biased that the Idol watchers will be waaaay ticked off. I think they’ll turn on Idol if they’re not already aware of Loser’s pre-empting and they’ll be MAD MAD MAD and off will go the TV.
I don’t watch much TV but Idol’s one of my favorite shows just so I can watch how the contestants hone their skills from week to week. I have to admit I was very ticked to hear about the Loser AGAIN wanting to speak on Tuesday during that time slot.
I think he chose it on purpose as he thinks he’ll have a big audience. He’s w-r-o-n-g.
I have a simple soution that all parties would like: Have The Messiah take commercial breaks every 8-10 minutes or so, to allow the Nets to recoup their lost revenue from the pre-empted programs. It’s a win-win.
As far as the broadcasting suits are concerned, programming is “the stuff that happens between the commercial breaks.”
‘Bama would appreciate having the breaks to give his “tennis neck” a rest while the TelePrompTer is reloaded with the next script segment.
lol, you made me think of TOTUS looking in your window
You know I think you are onto something. The guy just can’t stand anyone else being “the idol”
What the heck is Obamas telepromter addressing the nation for this time?
Something about a book deal: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2209922/posts
I really wish something would go wrong with the teleprompter!
Say it loud, say it PROUD:
and I am sure people will get tired of him...they are already.
This pisses me off. Bones, SVU, and Lie To Me are three of my favorite shows.
“Obama will take to the air next Tuesday evening on four broadcast networks and bump the most popular series on television, Fox’s “American Idol.”
Yeah, that will help his popularity among the zombies.
"At a time when we're struggling not only financially but to build audiences, this doesn't help on either front," one network executive said... "We will all lose one or two million dollars for this."
Maybe they can get 0bama to pay for it: Obama made $2.5M in book royalties last year
And unless programmers change thier guide info early enough all those DVR’s will record “American Idol” and get the “new idol” so it shows up in nielson
Having no TV, I’ll have to miss yet another one.
Will those of you who had the steel will necessary to listen and not off yourself give me a synopsis afterward?
Obama: D@@@ it, that's not the speech you guys wrote for me!!!
...What do you mean, you're locked out??? How can you be locked out of a teleprompter???....
I can find no confirmed reports of the official topic.
All the stories say it is ‘reported’ that he is considering using the opportunity to talk up his budget proposal.
Don’t you just love it?
He asks for a prime time slot without giving a firm topic or title for the address...