mfarrell's blog

Media’s Latest Head-Scratcher

Influential media analyst Craig Moffett of MoffettNathanson weighed in on the latest mega-media merger – T-Mobile’s purchase of upstart video service aggregator Layer3 TV – adding in a note to clients Wednesday that the logic behind the transaction is a little hard to follow.

Disney-Fox: Hell Freezes Over

With the Disney-Fox deal moving closer and closer to inevitability – most reports say that it could be announced as early as next week – Sanford Bernstein media analyst Todd Juenger said that despite earlier beliefs that Fox would never sell, market forces and personal taste may have played a role in the decision to come to the table.

Murdoch: ‘Nothing to Add’

No one was expecting 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch to make any major announcements at the UBS Global Media and Communications conference in New York Tuesday, even in light of the recent reports it is in deep discussions with The Walt Disney Co., and the media chief didn’t disappoint. 

What’s in a Name?

AT&T is reportedly inching closer to closing its much anticipated $108.7 billion merger with Time Warner Inc., and according to an excellent article in Vanity Fair that maps out some legitimate fears on the content side concerning the merger, it was revealed that AT&T has a new name picked out for the Time Warner unit.

Grace Under Pressure

The two biggest cable operators released third quarter results Oct. 26, and depending how sensitive cable’s panic meter is, it’s time for operators to either get nervous or get nervy.

I vote for the latter.

Charter-Viacom Goes to the Wire

Charter Communications’ carriage deal with Viacom expires on Sunday (Oct. 15), but most analysts believe it will likely, despite the early hype, end with a deal that keeps the youth-oriented networks on its cable systems.

Fever Pitch

The unexpected demise of the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team – it lost to tiny Trinidad and Tobago Tuesday night, missing the World Cup for the first time in more than 30 years – has created an inordinate amount of finger pointing, from USMNT coach Bruce Arena to the head of U.S. pro soccer’s governing body, the US Soccer Federation’s Sunil Gulati.

Crisis of Faith

BTIG media analyst Rich Greenfield has long warned that the traditional programming model was eroding more rapidly than the industry thinks, telling traditional programmers that if they don’t do a deal quickly, they may be too late. While that stance has led to varied and emotional response from content companies, recent deals seem to show that at least some programming execs may have been listening.

Another Mega Deal Lost

You can probably pack a potential mega deal between Verizon and The Walt Disney Co. along with all the other wished-for-but-never-realized mergers gathering dust in your media Hope Chest. But don’t throw away the key just yet.

Sprint Talks Could Be Insurance for Comcast, Charter

When I first heard that Comcast and Charter were in talks with Sprint about a possible wireless partnership, I’ll admit my first thought was: “Will these guys ever learn?”