NBC Quickly Hires Maria Taylor After Her Departure From ESPN

NBC made the announcement during its primetime Olympics show Friday. Taylor had been with ESPN since 2014 but her contract expired Tuesday. Her last assignment for the network was Tuesday night at the NBA Finals, where she was the pregame and postgame host for the network’s NBA Countdown show.

CLOSING BELL

Dow Closes Up 238, Nasdaq Gains 152

Wall Street rallied on Friday to close out a record-breaking end to a turbulent week. The S&P 500 index climbed 44.31, or 1%, to 4,411.79 to top its prior all-time high, set early last week.

Overnights: ‘Walker’ Hits 10-Episode High

The CW’s Walker this week drew 1.2 million total viewers — its largest audience in 10 episodes (dating back to March 18) — while also ticking up to a 0.2 demo rating. CBS’s Big Brother (3.7M/0.9) was steady week-to-week and led Thursday in both measures.

BRAND CONNECTIONS

ABC News Readies ‘One Nation Under Fire’

Gun violence is an issue that has plagued the United States for years. ABC News hopes its efforts to track the problem across a recent week will shed new light on it. The Disney-backed news outlet is on Sunday launching One Nation Under Fire, a new project in conjunction with news staffers at ABC’s owned stations that hopes to explore the root causes of gun violence by tracking a week of shootings across the U.S. from July 17 to July 24.

Nets: Long-Form Ads Don’t Fall Under FCC Enhanced Disclosure Decision

The broadcast network affiliates want the FCC to "clarify" that its new enhanced sponsorship ID rules for foreign-owned government-supplied programming does not apply to long-form advertising (infomercials). The FCC in April voted to boost broadcasters' disclosure requirements for programming on airtime leased by a foreign entity. The move comes amidst heightened focus on disinformation campaigns and despite some pushback from broadcasters, who argue the FCC is adding regs to an already overregulated service.

LeVar Burton: ‘Jeopardy’ Host Gig Began ‘Scary,’ Ended Fun

When the day came to tape the first of LeVar Burton’s week's share of episodes as one of a succession of guest hosts, the show's pace and the challenge of following in Alex Trebek's much-admired footsteps threw Burton off stride. It made for a rough start to the five back-to-back tapings that begin airing Monday, said the veteran actor known for Roots, Star Trek: The Next Generation and Reading Rainbow. He turned for advice to wife Stephanie Cozart Burton, who as his makeup artist was on hand to play coach during a production break.

Cleveland Indians To Become Guardians

The Cleveland Indians new name is. . .The Guardians. The Indians announced the new name on Twitter on Friday morning. They have been called the Indians since 1915. The franchise announced the name change in a video narrated by Cleveland fan Tom Hanks with music supplied by The Black Keys from the Akron area. There will be a press conference on Friday afternoon at Progressive Field to officially announce the name change.

Talking TV | FCC Unknowns In A Too-Quiet Summer

TVNewsCheck's Michael Depp and Harry Jessell discuss the uncertainty lingering at the FCC, where Acting Chair Jessica Rosenworcel may be facing contention for the permanent job and a fifth commissioner has yet to be appointed.

CBS Fires Station Chiefs In Los Angeles & Chicago

CBS has ousted the leaders of its O&O stations in Los Angeles and Chicago after concluding a six-month investigation into misconduct claims at the CBS Television Stations group. Jay Howell is out as general manager of KCBS-TV and KCAL-TV Los Angeles, as is Derek Dalton at WBBM-TV Chicago. The terminations were disclosed in memos Thursday about the conclusion of the investigation sparked by a Los Angeles Times expose on hostile working conditions for women and people of color at a number of CBS O&Os.

TVN’S FRONT OFFICE BY MARY COLLINS

A Cure For The Slow-Payer Blues?

Slow-paying advertising agencies continue to be an issue for collection teams —  an issue that seemed to worsen with the pandemic. Fortunately, a three-part plan from an industry expert who’s been in the media collections business for 50 years offers a solid structure, sound advice, and actionable insights for the best bet in collecting what’s due.

‘Manifest’ Racks Up More Big Streaming Numbers

The canceled NBC series again ranks No. 1 in Nielsen's metric for the week of June 21-27. For the second week in a row, the first two seasons of Manifest recorded more than 2 billion minutes of watch time on Netflix — marking some of the highest tallies for an acquired show since Nielsen began releasing weekly rankings 10 months ago.

ESPN And TNT Set NHL Schedules

ESPN will retake the ice for the first time since 2004 when it airs an NHL opening-night doubleheader in the fall. And the league’s other new TV partner, Turner Sports, also revealed its inaugural games on TNT. The league unveiled its 82-game 2021-22 regular-season schedule today

‘Change Is Coming’ To Streaming, Says WarnerMedia’s Jason Kilar

HBO and its streaming service, HBO Max, have attracted 67.5 million customers, and the company expects to reach 73 million by year end.

STATION ADVISORY

FCC To Clarify Political Ad Rules, But Proposes No Significant Changes

Last week, it was announced that the FCC would be considering some changes to its political broadcasting rules at its monthly open meeting in August.  In some quarters, that raised concern that significant changes were coming in time for the 2022 congressional elections. But, when the draft of the proposed changes was released, it turned out that the changes were instead very minor.

QUARTERLY REPORT

Twitter Posts Stronger-Than-Expected 2Q Results, Shares Jump

The San Francisco-based company earned $65.6 million, or 8 cents per share, in the April-June quarter. That's up from a loss of $1.38 billion, or $1.75 per share, a year earlier. Revenue jumped 74% to $1.19 billion from $683.4 million, surpassing Wall Street's expectations. Ad revenue in the U.S. alone nearly doubled.

TVN’s Free Webinars Easy To Digest Over Lunch

TVNewsCheck’s upcoming schedule of free webinars is the perfect accompaniment to whatever you’re having for lunch. So gather your tribe, order in and pick from TVNewsCheck’s upcoming free webinars to find the one that fits your job function.

TVNewsCheck will present its annual conference charting the industry’s revenue path ahead in a virtual format once again this year with sessions on data and spot TV; NextGen TV’s monetization buildout; capitalizing on the cloud; and the event’s annual discussion with four station group leaders who offer their outlook on broadcast’s most impactful trends. Register here.

TVN’S MEDIA JOBS

New Jobs Posted To TVNewsCheck

New jobs posted to TVNewsCheck’s Media Job Center include openings for an executive producer, a senior producer and an associate producer for Newsmax.

Executives from Tegna, E.W. Scripps, Hearst Television, Gray Television and Bitcentral will explore the possibilities for hubbing some or all TV station group operations — and how much of a role the private or public cloud may play in those future designs — during an Aug. 5 TVNewsCheck webinar. Speakers are (clockwise from upper left): Dave Burke, SVP and CTO, Gray Television; Kurt Rao, SVP-CTO, Tegna; Ray Thurber, VP engineering, E.W. Scripps; Stefan Hadl, VP engineering, Hearst Television; Sam Peterson, GM, core business unit, Bitcentral. Glen Dickson, TVNewsCheck contributing editor, will moderate. Register here.

SPONSORED BY TERADICI, MICROSOFT & AVID

TVN Webinar to explore remote production, the cloud and the future of television workflows

On July 29, technologists will share perspectives on how long-term remote work and a growing focus on the cloud are creating opportunities for innovation in television workflows and facilities design. Speakers, (clockwise from left) will be Kevin Brosnan, solutions architect, Teradici; Tim Murphy, principal program manager for media and entertainment, Microsoft Azure; Ray Thompson, senior director, partner and industry marketing, Avid; Mike Kralec, VP technical operations and deputy CTO, Sinclair Broadcast Group and moderator Glen Dickson, contributing editor, TVNewsCheck. Register to attend the webinar here.

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