Archive for November 29, 2012

Press Releases: 11/29/12

Posted in Press Releases on November 29, 2012 by icn2

Bloomberg (1)

Josh Rucci Joins Bloomberg as Global Head of Content Sales

New York, NY, Nov. 29, 2012 – Bloomberg today announced that Josh Rucci, former senior executive at Getty Images, has joined Bloomberg Media Group as global head of content sales. In the newly formed position, Rucci is responsible for sales of news, photos, video and other products to newspapers, magazines, broadcasters and online publishers around the world. Bloomberg’s diverse content includes business, finance, politics, technology, luxury and other key verticals. Rucci is based in London and reports to Susan Vobejda, general manager of Bloomberg Media Licensing and Distribution.

“We are pleased to welcome Josh at this important time for Bloomberg, as we continue to sign important new deals with publishers and clients,” said Vobejda. “Josh’s expertise and strong history in content sales make him an ideal fit as we expand our media licensing and distribution deals globally.”
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Reading Jeff Zucker and Phil Kent’s Tea Leaves…

Posted in CNN on November 29, 2012 by icn2

There’s a lot of tea leaves to look at from today’s teleconference with Jeff Zucker and Phil Kent so let’s get at it…

Teal Leaf #1:

Zucker, who succeeds outgoing CNN chief Jim Walton starting in January, said while much about CNN needs to change, the network is already packed with talent and has already made promising moves – like tapping “Supersize Me” producer and star Morgan Spurlock and cranky globe-trotting TV chef Anthony Bourdain for new programming next year.

“News is not just about politics and war,” Zucker said. “The definition of news is broader than perhaps has been historically thought about here.”

Those out there, myself included, who were looking for a sign that CNN’s news brand will stay intact or at the very least as robust as it has been, are reading the above quote in abject horror. The inference here is that CNN wants to keep its news brand but move the goalposts regarding what constitutes news. This is a similar tactic to how MSNBC has “repositioned” itself under Zucker and Phil Griffin. In that network’s case, it translated into gutting news in favor of talking head political analysis. The MSNBC that everyone points to as a success story for Zucker ignores the reality that Jeff Zucker essentially killed MSNBC, as it existed, and created a new network bearing the same name with a different charter. I don’t think either Kent or Zucker want to take CNN in that direction to that degree but I do believe they want to alter the discussion about what constitutes news in order to give them more leeway in publicly justifying the programming that’s going to be airing on CNN with increasing frequency in the future.

This point was driven home by Tea Leaf #2
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Zucker: Write Ups…

Posted in CNN on November 29, 2012 by icn2

The New York Times’ Brian Stelter and Bill Carter have reaction to the Zucker news…

Walter Isaacson, who ran CNN from 2001 to 2003, preceding Mr. Walton, said Mr. Zucker was a smart choice because “CNN has great journalists, but what it has needed is an imaginative programmer who knows how to build good shows.”

Phil Griffin, the president of MSNBC, said that if anyone could “bring CNN back,” Mr. Zucker could. Referring to Roger Ailes, the Fox News chairman, Mr. Griffin said: “Ailes on one side, Zucker on the other: Game on.”

As does USA Today’s Gary Levin

“You can look at CNN’s problem in two ways,” says Andrew Tyndall, a TV-news analyst who runs The Tyndall Report. “Either it’s lost its way as a TV channel that doesn’t know how to attract audiences, or it’s lost its way as a journalistic enterprise. In the minds of Time Warner, by hiring Zucker they’re saying it’s a television problem, not a journalism problem.”

And Tyndall contends that CNN’s attempts to solve its woes by “defining itself negatively — ‘we’re not like them’ — is diminishing and bland.” The question, he says, is, “How can you have a strong personality and gravitas at the same time without being ideological?”

And the AP’s David Bauder

Roger Ailes, top executive at Fox News, offered a welcome to Zucker on Thursday.

“I have known Jeff for a quarter of a century and he is one of the most experienced executives in the business,” Ailes said. “He is a talented producer with solid strategic skills and I’m sure he’ll make a difference at CNN. I wish Jeff the best.”

Tom Johnson, president of CNN during the 1990s, called Zucker’s hiring a “splendid choice.”

“I would hope it would be a return to CNN where news trumps all programming so CNN gets back to its basics of being a breaking news network,” Johnson said.

Bauder also touches on a topic on my mind…

There was no word on the futures of Ken Jautz and Mark Whitaker, who have been running the flagship network on a day-to-day basis since Walton’s departure.

One would think Whitaker is safe; the reasoning being his prior stint at NBC News. Jautz, on the other hand, I’m less certain about due to his lack of success after taking over from Jon Klein.

The Jeff Zucker Press Call…

Posted in CNN on November 29, 2012 by icn2

Out of all the Jeff Zucker to CNN articles I’ve read, the one I will bestow must read status on is the Washington Post’s Lisa de Moraes who gives a behind the curtain look at the press call that happened earlier today. I love de Moraes’ tone…

Both Zucker and Kent talked about improving the consistency of CNN shows, both in front of the camera and behind.

“CNN does not have an identity problem…we’ve had some execution problems, not only in primetime but in other dayparts as well,” Kent said.

“Jeff’s mission is to get every one of our platforms…to execute as well as possible.”

An LA Times reporter on the conference call asked if he’d just said he was going to be executing people in primetime.

Another member of the press on the call asked Zucker to settle the question the reporters were having at that very same moment on Twitter, as to whether Zucker will commute between his home in Manhattan and CNN’s operations in Atlanta by flying first class on commercial planes, or on a private jet.
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Jeff Zucker: CNN Worldwide President

Posted in CNN, HLN on November 29, 2012 by icn2

The press release…

Jeff Zucker Named President of CNN Worldwide

Jeff Zucker will join CNN Worldwide as president of the multi-platform global news enterprise, it was announced today by Phil Kent, chairman and CEO of CNN parent company Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. In January 2013, Zucker will assume executive oversight of a portfolio of 23 branded news and information businesses that includes CNN/U.S., CNN International, and HLN and reaches more than 2 billion people in some 200 countries around the world. Zucker will report to Kent and will be based at CNN in New

Zucker started his 25-year career with NBC as a researcher for NBC Sports’ coverage of the 1988 Summer Olympic Games and rose to president and chief executive officer of NBC Universal. He was named executive producer of Today in January 1992; under his eight-year leadership, the program was the most-watched morning news show and the most profitable program on television. Zucker went on to executive-produce NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw and the network’s coverage of the Persian Gulf War, the 1993 and 1997 presidential inaugurations and the 2000 elections. He was promoted to president of NBC Entertainment, president of the NBC Entertainment, News & Cable group and president and CEO of the NBC Universal Television Group. Currently, Zucker is executive producer of the syndicated daytime show Katie.

“Jeff’s experience as a news executive is unmatched for its breadth and success,” said Kent. “He built and sustained the number-one brand in morning news, and under his watch NBC’s signature news programming set a standard for quality and professionalism. As a programmer, a brand-builder and a leader, he will bring energy and new thinking to CNN. I couldn’t be happier to welcome him or more excited about what he’ll accomplish here.”

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Free for All: 11/29/12

Posted in Free For All on November 29, 2012 by icn2

What’s on your mind?

Advertising for CNN Heroes…

Posted in CNN on November 29, 2012 by icn2

MediaPost’s Wayne Friedman writes about the advertising for CNN Heroes…

“CNN Heroes is a tentpole programming event for CNN,” stated Greg D’Alba, president, CNN and Turner Digital Ad Sales. “It culminates with the December broadcast, but really lives year-round, giving our advertising partners, especially those that wish to spotlight particular cause-related campaigns, the perfect platform to connect with an emotionally-engaged audience at a relevant time.”

Some of the sponsors’ existing cause-related efforts will be featured in their creative messaging that will run during the show.

For example, Johnson & Johnson will again feature its “Nurses Heal” creative promoting their Campaign for Nursing’s Future foundation. Subaru will run creative that spotlights its “Share The Love” event that donates $250 to the owner’s choice of five charities for every new Subaru bought or leased through the promotional period of Nov. 21, 2012 to Jan.2, 2013.