TV Is Dead

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So, just as all those incredibly smart people predicted a few years ago, TV is dead.

It died a slow, lingering death, wounded by millions of little cuts from all those niche channels; and, of course, there’s the internet, YouTube, Netflix…all those choices…

what? Wait!

TV didn’t die?

TV isn’t dead?

TV isn’t even dying?

But…but…but…how can that be?? All those smart people…

<ahem>

Actually, Americans watched more TV than ever in 2010, at least according to Nielsen, and since they measure TV viewing as their business, I think they’re probably right.

Yes, cable is growing, slightly, but the worst-performing network (NBC, if you own stock) retained more than twice the audience of the best-performing cable channel (USA) despite such brilliant primetime programming on NBC as the Jay Leno Show.

The biggest hit of the year? Must’ve been Jersey Shore or The Walking Dead, right? Mad Men? Everyone who’s anyone knows that; it’s in all the trades, dude.

Wrong.

The biggest hit of the year was Hawaii Five-O, a re-make of a 40 year-old hit show. Book it, Dan-o!

So much for creativity and American passion for fresh, new things.

And how about this shocker: ALL of the cable news channels posted declines from their 2009 numbers, despite (or perhaps because of) the elections, and a massive oil spill. And here I thought I was the only one sick to death of screaming insults and partisan news coverage from both sides.

There are more surprises, and you can check them out here, if you’re interested.

And this is a pretty good article about the steady hand at the CBS helm: Nina Tassler, Entertainment President. She doesn’t grab the spotlight like Les Moonves, but who does that shock?

Apparently, just like in Radio, it’s the programmers and execs you don’t read about every day who really know what they’re doing.

Imagine that…

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