/// Is Cable Finally Getting Parity With Broadcast?
On Monday, top executives at both NBC and Fox upfronts did something you don’t usually see in a network presentation. They admitted they weren’t happy with their product, either. “We had a challenging first quarter, as well as our share of midseason disappointments,” NBC’s Bob Greenblatt said to buyers and clients. “This was not our best year,” said Fox’s Kevin Reilly. Jimmy Kimmel made his network’s diminishing audience into a joke at the ABC presentation: “Every year, Apple products get smaller, and nobody has a problem with that.” Cable networks have been waiting for this moment. Mel Berning came out swinging at the A+E Networks upfront, scolding broadcasters for charging a “failure tax” and telling ad buyers that the smart money was with his networks’ hits. David Levy, head of ad sales for Turner (who shows buyers his wares during the same week as the broadcast presentations, along with USA), has been pushing for parity with broadcast for years, and now, he told Adweek, “We’re getting there.” “Sports, kids and news have been at parity for five, six years,” Levy said. “For entertainment, there just hasn’t been enough quality programming, but we’ve really stepped things up in the last four or five years.” Many across the negotiating table agree
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Is Cable Finally Getting Parity With Broadcast?