Phillip Swann is president and publisher of TVPredictions.com. He has been quoted in dozens of publications and broadcast outlets, including CNN, Fox News, Inside Edition, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Financial Times, The Associated Press and The Hollywood Reporter. He can be reached at email@example.com or at 703-505-3064.
Click TVPredictions.com to read more news and features on TV technology.
DIRECTV Vs Viacom: Day 7
(July 17, 2012)
-- Yesterday's news that Viacom channels such as MTV and
Nickelodeon have plunged in the ratings since they were pulled
from DIRECTV could help bring the DIRECTV/Viacom impasse to a
The Los Angeles Times reports that on July 10, the last day Nickelodeon was on DIRECTV, its daily audience was 1.8 million. However, that number fell to 1.2 million the next day, the first day the channel was not on DIRECTV's airwaves. By July 13, the channel was garnering about 1.3 million.
The Times also writes that MTV's day average fell from 500,000 on July 10 to 273,000 on July 13, a 43 percent decline, while VHI has fallen 30 percent and Comedy Central is down 21 percent.
DIRECTV was forced last Tuesday night to remove 26 Viacom channels when the two companies could not reach a new programming pact. The channels affected include: all MTV channels, Comedy Central, all Nickelodeon channels, BET, Spike, all VH1 channels, TVLand, Logo, CMT and Palladia.
While both sides seem unwilling to budge on its positions in the impasse, the dismal ratings could pressure Viacom to accept less from DIRECTV to carry its channels. At some point, the lower ratings could begin to cut into Viacom's advertising revenues.
In other DIRECTV/Viacom news:
* Two Wall Street analysts said yesterday that the impasse will ultimately come down to digital rights - how much Viacom will charge to allow DIRECTV to stream its programming. The analysts believe that DIRECTV will come close to paying Viacom what it wants to include its channels in its traditional lineup.
* DIRECTV alerted subscribers that Comedy Central's The Daily Show and The Colbert Report will be available for free on Hulu, beginning today. Viacom removed the shows from its web sites last week, but the shows are now available at Hulu.com, which is free. (Hulu Plus requires a subscription.)
* Finally, a group of DIRECTV customers started a petition at Change.org to support DIRECTV's stance against Viacom. The group is urging people to sign the petition as a show of force.
Comment on this story below.
What do you think? Offer your comments below!