mfarrell's blog

Dauman Answers Critics

Viacom executive chairman and CEO Philippe Dauman, taking more than his fair share of criticism over the past several months, finally had enough, lashing out against what he called the naysayers and publicity seekers who doubt the company’s future and his leadership on a conference call with analysts to discuss fiscal Q1 results.


Wolff Snarls At BTIG Analyst

BTIG media analyst Rich Greenfield has been no stranger to controversy over the years, being one of the more vocal predictors of the death of traditional television.

Viacom Shares Yawn on Chairman Shift

Viacom investors started off the day full of hope, driving the company’s share price as high as $47.47 each (up 6.3%) in early trading, in anticipation of a shakeup in the wake of executive chairman Sumner Redstone’s decision to relinquish that role at CBS.

The Walking Wounded

With just two more days left before its carriage agreement with AMC Networks expires, potentially depriving its nearly 4 million members of their Sunday night zombie fix, the National Cable Television Cooperative is faced with a dilemma: Does it agree to a big rate increase and the addition of five new channels its membership doesn’t want, or does it do without one of cable’s most popular networks, including its No. 1 rated show, The Walking Dead.

Yahoo (No Exclamation Point)

I am old enough to remember when Yahoo! stood for something (Yet Another Hierarchically Organized Oracle) and not just the final word of Major Kong in the last scene in Dr. Strangelove (or was that “Wahoo?”). Nevertheless, the latest moves of Yahoo!

Shane Smith's Last Word

New York – Vice Media CEO Shane Smith endured the endless barbs of friends and colleagues as the recipient of the Center for Communication’s Frank Stanton Award for Excellence in Communications Wednesday, but the new media wonder boy got the last and perhaps the best word in as the luncheon fundraising roast for the non-profit journalism education foundation came to a close.


Patrick Drahi: Europe’s John Malone or the Dutch Paul Allen?

Patrick Drahi’s Altice NV has made another big splash in U.S. cable, agreeing to pay $17.7 billion for Cablevision Systems,  a deal that will vault the European telco (when coupled with its $9.1 billion acquisition of Suddenlink Communication) in to the No.4 spot among cable operators in the country. The fact that Drahi has done it so fast – they announced the Suddenlink deal in May – and his whirlwind string of European telco deals over the past few years have drawn obvious comparison to cable legend John Malone.

Another Form of Cord Cutting

There has been a lot of talk lately about how consumers are cutting the Pay TV cord because of high prices and not enough choice, but the idea of doing without the video business is becoming increasingly attractive to some distributors as well.


2016: The Critical Year For Measurement

Anyone who has been around the media business for any length of time has heard the song before – [insert calendar year here] is the year we will finally experience the joy of true cross platform ratings measurement.  But at the risk of having to eat crow in the next six months, 2016 is beginning to shape up as the year it finally happens.