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August 26, 2022 2:38 pm  #1


WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

(Paywall link) https://www.wsj.com/articles/nbc-considers-cutting-back-programming-hours-in-prime-time-11661532206

If NBC does this, this will mean only two of the big four in the US will program from 10-11pm. Unless ABC and CBS also follow suit.

This could have interesting downstream effects for Canadian broadcasters, as CTV, CTV2, Global, and Citytv all have American simulcasts at 10pm.

 

August 26, 2022 3:50 pm  #2


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

This is something I had long feared, and according to the article, it's not the first time NBC has toyed with the idea. (I hope they don't forget the disastrous attempt of moving Jay Leno to weeknights at 10 PM, which was almost as bad a marketing blunder as "New Coke.")

A few years ago, I wrote Matt Roush, the head critic for TV Guide in the U.S. and several other online publications, about whether he thought we were seeing the end of network TV thanks to streaming. His response was no, it will be around for a long time to come. But I was doubtful then and I'm even more doubtful now. 

How long before any TV you want to watch is something you'll have to pay for? My guess is it may be sooner than we think. Another victim of the Internet and modern technology. 

Here's a separate non-paywalled version of the story from Variety:

NBC Considers Abandoning 10 P.M. Primetime Hour for Local Programming

 

August 27, 2022 4:58 pm  #3


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

I am wondering about other dayparts as well.  Today (Saturday) CBS 62 which is an owned and operated CBS affiliate in Detroit only had 2 hours of network programming from 6am to 5pm.  CBS Saturday morning was on from 7-9am.  After 9am the broadcast day was all infomercials, World's Funniest Weather, a church service, and Gospel Superfest Jam.

 The other Detroit affiliated stations (NBC,ABC,FOX) all broadcast network sports on Saturday afternoon (Soccer, College Football, Golf, World Series Little League Baseball) but CBS 62 opted for mostly infomercials and a couple of specialty programs for 8 straight hours.  

 

August 28, 2022 3:53 pm  #4


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

At one time WIVB would run endless hours of infomercials on Saturday afternoons if CBS was offering less than mass appeal sports programming.

 

August 28, 2022 4:29 pm  #5


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

NBC has given up on daytime (or more specifically, anything between the end of the fourth hour of Today at 11 am and prime time at 8 pm) and I wouldn't be surprised if ABC and CBS kill their soap operas and withdraw from afternoon programming within a few years. 

 

August 28, 2022 11:51 pm  #6


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

Hansa wrote:

NBC has given up on daytime (or more specifically, anything between the end of the fourth hour of Today at 11 am and prime time at 8 pm) and I wouldn't be surprised if ABC and CBS kill their soap operas and withdraw from afternoon programming within a few years. 

That's not true.  They're going to add an hour of news in place of Days of Our Lives at 1, NBC News Daily which debuts in two weeks.  Also, it's not technically a network show, but all NBC owned and operated stations are carrying the NBC produced Kelly Clarkson's talk show at 3 to lead in to local news at 4.

 

 

September 1, 2022 5:48 pm  #7


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

Spending less and expecting bigger audiences is like Rogers claiming its proposed acquisition of Shaw will increase competition. 

Not in any normal world. 

Comcast Looks to Cut Up to $1 Billion From Budgets at Its TV Networks - Including NBC

 

September 1, 2022 6:41 pm  #8


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

The article reads like they are cutting the billion from the entertainment division which would hurt NBC.  Likely that money will be moved to other divisions like theme parks and Peacock.  Comcast's streamer service Peacock has not had a hit show and lost $500 million in the last quarter with no growth in subscribers. The company apparently believes that future growth is with streaming and not OTA broadcasting like NBC.  Watch NBC have more low cost game shows and reality TV in the future, and yes fewer network hours of programming.

 

September 2, 2022 2:51 am  #9


Re: WSJ: NBC Considers Cutting Back Programming Hours in Prime Time

If this article is correct, none of the streamers are making money yet, so Peacock isn't alone in its misery.

https://slate.com/technology/2022/08/streaming-trouble-hbo-max-netflix.html
 

paterson1 wrote:

Comcast's streamer service Peacock has not had a hit show and lost $500 million in the last quarter with no growth in subscribers. The company apparently believes that future growth is with streaming and not OTA broadcasting like NBC.