TV news finds new, creative frontier in streaming media

Journalists who have made the switch from traditional TV news to streaming media have found room to experiment and rewrite the rules in a medium that offers live linear and on-demand opportunities. Comparing notes during a TVNewsCheck webinar were (clockwise from upper left) Amagi’s Brian Ring, Atmosphere’s Micah Grimes, Cox Media Group’s Matthew Dominguez, AccuWeather Network’s Sarah Katt and LiveNOW from Fox’s Shareef Abul-Ela. 

The Vendors Powering NBC’s Winter Olympics

NBCUniversal is providing coverage of the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing from Feb. 2 to 20, featuring a Winter Olympics-record 2,800-plus hours of coverage across NBC, Peacock, USA Network, CNBC, and the NBC Sports app. Here’s where all the tech necessary to deliver all that comes from.

NBC’s Betting Partner Pointsbet Not Taking Out Super Bowl Ads As Its Stock Flags

NBCU Touts New Metrics For Ads During Olympics

NBCUniversal, which has been active in the search for alternatives to Nielsen for audience measurement, is touting some metrics that could encourage its Olympic advertisers. The fancy metrics show that NBC’s coverage of the Beijing Winter Olympics has fewer commercials and that those commercials are working hard, the kind of data NBCU believes is important to companies writing big checks to sponsor the games.

Peacock Struggles To Take Flight Amid Low Demand For Its TV Originals

Peacock has a serial TV problem and is counting on a pandemic-delayed pipeline of programming to help overcome it. More than a year after its launch, NBCUniversal’s streaming service lacks the buzzy original TV shows of its rivals or even the fan-friendly Star Trek offerings of Paramount Plus, the ViacomCBS service formerly known as CBS All Access. And while top brass praised Peacock as “headed in the right direction” during Comcast’s earnings call with Wall Street analysts last week, the lack of breakthrough hits, considered key to streamer growth, suggests the service has much work to do before it becomes truly competitive with its rivals.

Meghan Rafferty Named Executive Producer of ‘NBC Nightly News’

NBC News named the producer to lead its “NBC Nightly News,” replacing Jenn Suozzo, who recently departed for a senior role at CNN. In a memo to staffers Thursday, NBC News President Noah Oppenheim cited Rafferty’s “keen news instincts and innovative vision” and indicated she would play a role in helping the newscast not only in its linear edition, but in new formats across digital venues.

NBCUniversal And BBC Strike Unscripted Formats Deal

The U.S. media group, which operates broadcast network NBC, a slew of cable networks and streamer Peacock, and the British public broadcaster have teamed up to find unscripted shows that can work both in the States and UK. The pair will hunt for shows produced by British producers across unscripted genres and will look to co-commission pilots or develop projects with series potential.

NBC’s Olympics Won Gold In Social Video Despite Disappointing Ratings

Olympics, NFL Push NBC To 52-Week Ratings Win

The network wins the full TV year in both total viewers and adults 18-49 for the first time since 2018. NBC averaged 5.29 million viewers in primetime for the TV year, a slim 30,000 more than CBS (5.26 million). ABC ranks third with 4.31 million, and Fox is at 3.56 million.

‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ Rises In Series Finale, ‘Big Brother’ Wins Thursday

The Brooklyn Nine-Nine series finale rose in its final episode, earning a 0.5 rating in the 18-49 demo and 2.17 million viewers, per fast affiliates. But it came in second to Big Brother on CBS, which ruled Thursday in all fields. The latest episode (0.9, 3.77M)  of the reality series was the highest-rated and most-watched title of the evening.

Telemundo’s Carlos Quintanilla on New Possibilities for Spanish-Language Content

Quintanilla is the writer and creator of Netflix original “Control Z” and now serves as senior director of future original development at NBCUniversal Telemundo.

A Half Million Pets Finding Homes Thanks To NBCUniversal’s Pet Adoption Campaign

Tokyo Olympics Draw Smallest Summer Games TV Audience Since 1988

Average nightly viewership was 15.5 million, NBCUniversal said, the lowest since it won exclusive U.S. media rights 33 years ago.

Ratings: Olympics Eye Audience Low, Fox’s Preseason NFL Close Behind

NBC’s primetime Thursday coverage of the Tokyo Olympics averaged 8.6 million total viewers and a 1.9 demo rating, marking the summer games’ smallest audience yet (per fast nationals) and matching their demo low (set last Saturday). On Fox, an NFL preseason match-up between the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers averaged 6.2 million viewers and a 1.7 demo rating.

NBCU Claims Tokyo Olympics Have Generated 100 Billion Minutes of Viewing

NBCU said that the Olympics are on pace to deliver more minutes in consumption than the average month of Netflix and March Madness combined. Viewers have streamed more than 3 billion minutes of Tokyo Olympics coverage across platforms, the company said.


NBCUniversal Invested Heavily In The Olympics. Is That Why NBC News Has Made It A Major Story?

During their broadcasts on Monday, ABC’s World News Tonight and CBS’s Evening News devoted about two minutes each to recounting the latest triumphs and disappointments at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Over on NBC’s Nightly News, however, it was a different story — a much bigger one.

Olympics Ratings A Bust For NBC But A Boost For Streaming

Ratings for NBC’s telecasts of the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo are down significantly from 2016 but still among the most-watched TV events of the year.

NBCU Gives Peacock Major Role In Olympics

Peacock will launch a Tokyo Olympics destination on July 15 featuring live coverage of some the games’ biggest events, including gymnastics, track and field and the U.S. men’s basketball team’s pursuit of their fourth straight gold. The NBCUniversal streamer said Wednesday that Peacock will feature new daily live shows, original programming, dedicated Olympics channels, full event replays and curated highlights. All of Peacock’s Tokyo Olympics programming will be available to stream for free with exception of USA Men’s Basketball live coverage that will be available to Peacock Premium subscribers.

NBCU Reality TV Streamer Hayu Launches In 11 More Countries

Sisterhood Rules In Peacock’s First Spanish-Language Series

The Miami-set Armas de Mujer, which translates in English as Women’s Weapons, also is a switch for its stars, including Kate del Castillo of La Reina del Sur drama series fame (above).

Grace Wu Named NBCU TV And Streaming Casting Head, Tomii Crump To Oversee Unscripted Casting

Bill McGoldrick Exits As Head Of Programming At Peacock, USA, Syfy

NBCU Bows PayPal For Its One Platform

NBCUniversal is introducing PayPal as its transactional partner for ecommerce on One Platform, its ad-buying model for reaching and measuring unduplicated audiences across all of its linear and OTT properties, introduced this past January. Last month, NBCU debuted ecommerce initiative One Platform Commerce with Shop Telemundo, said to reach 91% of U.S. adult Hispanics. Now, it’s rolling out ecommerce across the full One Platform.

Spot TV Execs To Explore How Attribution Platforms Affect Market

A TVNewsCheck Working Lunch Webinar will gather senior executives of the spot TV marketplace to consider how the growing use of attribution platforms is affecting the buying and selling of local TV advertising campaigns. Set for Nov. 19 at 1 p.m. ET, the webinar will feature (clockwise from left: Adam Monaco, SVP Disney Advertising Sales Local; Tracy Chavez, EVP and director of investment operations at Publicis; Shawn Makhijani, SVP NBC Spot On and SVP business development and strategy at NBCU Owned Stations; Janet Stilson, contributing editor, TVNewsCheck, moderator; and Chaitanya Upadhyay, VP local solutions at Alphonso. Register to attend the webinar here.

Jeff Wachtel Out At NBCU International Amid Behavioral Issues

NBCU, Roku Strike Peacock Streaming Deal

On Friday, Roku and NBCUniversal reached a deal bringing Peacock, NBCU’s recently launched streaming service, to Roku, while also keeping a number of other NBC apps on the platform.

NBCU Investigating Ron Meyer Behavior

NBCUniversal has launched an investigation into Ron Meyer’s behavior over his affair with actress Charlotte Kirk, to see if the now former vice chairman improperly used company money or resources with either the affair or its cover-up. Meyer abruptly stepped down last week after he disclosed to NBCU CEO Jeff Shell his relationship with Kirk, ending his celebrated tenure in the industry in embarrassment. An NBCU spokesperson confirmed the company has hired an outside investigator.

Linda Yaccarino Answers Your Burning ’30 Rock’ Upfront Special Questions

From being name-checked in the show to inserting Easter eggs for marketers.

Review: ’30 Rock Reunion’ A Funny, Blatant Commercial For Peacock

Yaccarino Calls For Marketing Transformation

Linda Yaccarino, the chairman of advertising and partnerships at NBCUniversal, is calling for “radical transformation” of the marketing business in the face of cultural change around racism and the impact of COVID-19 on the economy. The call comes a week after the Association of National Advertisers made proposals to transform the advertising business, including the timing of the upfront.

NBCU Tackles A Reluctant Madison Avenue

The Comcast-backed company on Monday reiterated its interest in having advertisers give consideration to a series of new initiatives it has unveiled in recent months that call for buying ads across different video venues and reducing the number of commercials that appear within any individual piece of content. “We are changing our business so we can make your business stronger,” said Linda Yaccarino, chairman of advertising sales and partnerships for NBCUniversal, during a streaming-video presentation held for media buyers, analysts and press.

NBCU Weighs Layoffs In Media, Entertainment

NBCUniversal began discussions this week over coronavirus-induced cost-cutting measures that could result in significant layoffs, according to insiders. NBCU CEO Jeff Shell alluded to the prospect on Comcast’s Thursday earnings call. “Over the next weeks and months, we’ll make pretty significant adjustments… across our business,” he said.

$1.25B In Ad Sales On Hold At NBC

The coronavirus crisis has postponed the 2020 Olympic Games, a key TV event for NBCUniversal.


TVN’s New Facilities Insider | NBCU Takes The IP Plunge In Boston

The massive NBCUniversal Boston Media Center in Needham, Mass., houses the company’s NBC and Telemundo stations plus regional cable news and sports networks in a new $125 million, 160,000-square foot headquarters. “It’s a complete game-changer,” says one GM of the greenfield build.


Entercom, NBC Sign Philly Content Deal

KYW-AM and WCAU-WWSI join forces to create what the companies call the region’s “largest and most experienced broadcast news and weather team.”

NBCU Expects $2.5B In Peacock Revenue, Break-Even By 2024

Four years after it launches, first to some Comcast subscribers in April and then nationally by July, the service will be bringing in $2.5 billion in revenue and breaking even. There will be 30 million to 35 million “active users” by that point, the company said.

NBCU Has Sold $1B+ In Summer Olympics Ads

Eight months before the start of the Toyko Summer Olympics, NBCUniversal says it has pulled more than $1 billion in national TV ad revenues — a double-digit percentage gain vs. the same time period prior to the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics. Dan Lovinger, executive vp of ad sales, NBC Sports Group, says about half of the Toyko Olympic advertisers are new marketers.

NBCU Picks McConville To Oversee Ad Platforms

As EVP of ad platforms and operations, Ryan McConville will lead a team dedicated to cross-portfolio advertising technology and platform solutions to improve the commercial experience and drive impact for brands.


Could sales automation boost local TV against digital giants?

Sales leaders from a half dozen major TV station groups gathered to talk about the challenges they face competing with an increasingly powerful array of digital giants. Key to their strategy is moving to impressions-based selling and creating an automated pipeline connecting media buyers and TV sales reps and cutting down on the busy work that drives up the costs of transactions. Pictured: Frank Comerford, chief revenue officer, and president, commercial operations, NBCU Owned Television Stations.

Comcast Threatened With Being ‘Broken Up’

Less than a week before Comcast and Department of Justice lawyers will face off against Byron Allen in the Supreme Court in the Entertainment Studios boss’ $20 billion discrimination lawsuit against the NBCUniverisal owner, Rep. Bobby Rush now wants the telecommunications giant brought down to size.