Thursday April 6, 2017

MGM is buying cable network Epix for $1,000,000,000.

I am ALL in on IFC's Brockmire.  You should be watching this show.

Page Six TV is still going to be a thing, huh?

NBC has upped its Will & Grace order up to 12 episodes.  As you were.

The season 2 finale of Colony airs tonight.

One thing I could not possibly care less about: Pepsi's tone-deaf Kendall Jenner ad.  Bye.

I think the world has more Chris Hardwick than it needs.  Evidently, not everyone agrees with me.

David Schwimmer and his wife have separated.

Adam Devine will host the 2017 MTV Movie + TV Awards.

VH1 renewed Hip Hop Squares for a 2nd season.  Don't fret, I didn't know it was a thing either.

I know I've asked this before, but seriously, how are people still getting catfished?

The Daily Show is going on a brief hiatus, but certainly left on a high note.

Louis C.K.'s vs. Dave Chappelle -- whose trans joke is better?  A question I didn't think needed to be explored.  Again, Vulture doesn't see things the same way.

Yes Buzzfeed, surprisingly I did get a passing grade on this 11th grade AP U.S. History test.  Barely.

Charges against Artie Lange, stemming from his March arrest for drug possession, have been reduced

From Rolling Stone: "David Letterman will induct Pearl Jam into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the Brooklyn induction ceremony Friday, with the retired Late Show host filling in for Neil Young.

"'Due to illness, Neil Young is regrettably no longer able to induct Pearl Jam at this Year's Induction Ceremony,' the Rock Hall said in a statement Wednesday. 'The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is thrilled that David Letterman has agreed to induct Pearl Jam this Friday night at the 32nd Annual Induction Ceremony.'

"Letterman's Late Show was a favorite late-night venue for Pearl Jam, who performed at the Ed Sullivan Theatre seven times – compared to the zero appearances they made on Jay Leno's Tonight Show – with Eddie Vedder also performing as a solo artist on Late Show. In 2006, the band played a 10-song set for the Late Show audience.

"The band's first Late Show visit occurred in September 1996 with a run-through of No Code's Hail Hail. 'This is a big thrill for me,' Letterman told the band after finally recruiting them to appear on the show.

"Letterman joins a Rock Hall induction roster that includes Snoop Dogg (inducting Tupac Shakur), Jackson Browne (Joan Baez), Rush's Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson (Yes), Dhani Harrison (ELO) and Train's Pat Monahan (Journey). Lenny Kravitz will also pay tribute to Prince at Friday's induction ceremony, while Pharrell will honor lifetime achievement recipient Nile Rodgers.

"The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony will air on HBO April 29th at 8 p.m. ET/PT. A special exhibit dedicated to the 2017 class will open at the Rock Hall in Cleveland March 31st."

Per TheWrap, "[i]f you’re wondering how it makes financial sense for Bill O’Reilly and Fox News to pay out a reported $13 million to women accusing the O’Reilly Factor host of sexual harassment or misconduct, allow us to do the math.

The O’Reilly Factor isn’t just a profitable show: It’s the network’s cash cow, generating a whopping $446 million in advertising from 2014 through 2016, according to Kantar Media.

"According to Forbes, O’Reilly brought in an estimated $110.8 million last year — more than five times the $20.7 million MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow brought in during the same time period.

"What’s more, Forbes reports that Fox News is responsible for 10 percent of 21st Century Fox’s revenue and a whopping  25 percent of its operating income.

"For 16 consecutive years O’Reilly, has held the No. 1 spot in cable news. On Saturday, the New York Times reported that Fox News and its biggest star ponied up $13 million to five women claiming sexual harassment or other inappropriate behavior. O’Reilly denies any wrongdoing.

"Whatever other reasons it may have, Fox News also has a financial incentive to keep O’Reilly — even while licking its wounds from another sexual harassment scandal that led to Fox News chief Roger Ailes’ exit.

"Under pressure from O’Reilly critics, at least 20 advertisers have bailed out on The O’Reilly Factor.

"Paul Wittenberg,executive vice president of advertising sales at Fox News, said in a statement on Tuesday: 'We value our partners and are working with them to address their current concerns about The O’Reilly Factor. At this time, the ad buys of those clients have been re-expressed into other FNC programs.'

"Hollywood crisis manager Howard Bragman told TheWrap O’Reilly’s should be worried, though he wasn’t willing to call time of death on his show just yet.

“'This is a big deal, let’s not sugarcoat it,' Bragman said. While he called the situation a 'crisis,' he also believes that Fox News executives will do 'everything they can to try and salvage this.'

"Bragman says there is little O’Reilly can do but wait out the clock and hope that 'someone else does something really stupid so that the media can move on.'

“'It all depends on his audience right now. If he starts to lose them, then Fox will have to look a little closer,' Bragman said.

"So far, that hasn’t happened. Tuesday’s O’Reilly Factor was the most-watched cable news program on cable news in both total viewers and the key demographic of adults age 25-54. The show averaged 3.8 million total viewers and 628,000 among the demo.

"Still, the advertiser losses are severe, said Chad Kawalec, advertising expert and founder of the Brand Identity Center. He isn’t so sure O’Reilly can remain on the air.

“'It’s over,' said Kawalec. 'This is equivalent to a consumer boycott.'”

Per The Hollywood Reporter, "[a]mong the common threads between Sunday television juggernauts Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead, there's the fact that the AMC zombie drama appears to be closing in on its source material ... then again, appearances can be deceiving. 

"Despite the fact that The Walking Dead has officially entered the territory of All-Out War, a massive arc from Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard's comic books, the creative forces behind the scenes of the apocalyptic series insist that there's no risk of the show outpacing the events of the ongoing comics.

"'With some plans we have for the future, I don't think so,' showrunner Scott M. Gimple told The Hollywood Reporter when asked if Walking Dead is on pace to move past the comic books. 'I think it's unlikely, but it depends where the book stops.'

"As of right now, there's no sign that the books are stopping anytime soon. The current Walking Dead arc takes place several years after the current events of the television series, with Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and his allies — including Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), believe it or not — contending with the fallout from yet another war.

"What's more, Gimple has said that the AMC series might stop down to focus on some of the events from the comic's time jump, during which a variety of changes within Alexandria and the surrounding communities take place, including one fan-favorite becoming a pirate of sorts. With that said, Kirkman isn't concerned that the show will pull a Game of Thrones, which soared past George R.R. Martin's currently published material in its sixth season.

"'I don't know if anyone sat down to do the math, but if the show is gaining on the comic book, it's at a very slow pace,' the comic book writer and executive producer told THR. 'We're expanding storylines so every now and then we zip through the comic book, and then we slow down for a while and add a bunch of stuff that's not in the comics. There's not any danger of that happening in any way.'

"'When we get to season 20, then I think we'll be caught up,' added executive producer David Alpert. 'And at that point, we'll have to have Robert really pick up the pace [with the comics].'

"'If we say season 20 too often around Andrew Lincoln, he will murder us, and then you won't have to worry about anything!' Kirkman joked."

Per AdAge, "[t]here has never been a reasonable expectation of online privacy, and there never will be. Regardless of what you may have recently heard about joint resolutions or nullifications, nothing has changed. Internet service providers have always had the right to use your data as they see fit, within a few Federal Trade Commission and Federal Communications Commission parameters. This has not changed. Nor has anything changed with respect to FANG (Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google). These companies have always had the right to use your data as they see fit -- with a few privacy policy exceptions and within the few aforementioned FTC and FCC parameters.

"So regarding online privacy, for all practical purposes, absolutely nothing has changed.

What about the new rule?

"On April 3, the president signed S.J.Res.34, a joint resolution that nullifies the FCC's "Protecting the Privacy of Customers of Broadband and Other Telecommunications Services" rule. But that FCC rule never went into effect. So net-net, nothing has changed.

"One side will tell you that the FCC rule was overly burdensome for ISPs because they would have had to obtain opt-in permission from each customer to use the customers' data. The other side will tell you that the FCC rule was absolutely necessary because ISPs have access to 100% of your online activity, while FANG can only see what you do on their respective sites.

"Most of the explanations from elected leaders failed to mention that you pay your ISP for access to the internet. Therefore, you would expect some privacy options, even if those options were offered at a premium price.

"On the other hand, you pay for Facebook and Google with your data; so, as the cliché goes, 'You are the product,' and there you should not have any expectation of privacy (other than what's written in the user license agreement or privacy policy of the respective sites). As for Amazon and Netflix, you pay with a combination of cash and data. But rest easy: both Amazon and Netflix only use your data internally, and while they offer insights to certain vendors, sponsors and suppliers, the amount of actual data they make available to 2nd or 3rd parties is negligible.

Short-term impact

"In the short term, all of this is meaningless. ISPs don't make money selling your data -- although they could -- and most of them do not yet have an effective way to sell advertising. They make money by charging you for internet access. FANG literally lives on your data. Without it, FANG would be severely disabled. But you already grant them the rights, so nothing has changed.

Long-term impact

"In the long term, however, things will change. There are many probable futures. One of them is not passing previously proposed privacy rules by the FCC. But what has changed is the method that will be used to draft and legislate privacy policy. This is a nontrivial matter; it is, and will continue to be, a topic that inspires vigorous debate.

"In a data-deregulated environment, ISPs are free to develop all kinds of new capabilities as the technologies become practical. We might see 'intelligence layers' between us and the networks. Hypothetically, this type of AI would know where you are, where you are likely to be, what you like to do, when you like to do it, etc. In practice, it would be used to sell you stuff. It could also be useful for autonomous vehicles and IoT applications. But, as with all things, there's a dark side. Thinking about potential abuses of this type of data-driven AI should give one pause."

Per TVLine, "Stephen Amell, the well-trained, well-sculpted star of the CW superhero series [Arrow], is among the nine famous faces who will brave the American Ninja Warrior course in the series’ first-ever celebrity edition, airing Thursday, May 25 at 8/7c as part of NBC’s annual Red Nose Day programming.

"Also set to navigate the Floating Steps and up to five other obstacles in Celebrity Ninja Warrior for Red Nose Day, and in the name of charity, are Erika Christensen (Parenthood), Derek Hough (Dancing With the Stars alum-turned-host of NBC’s upcoming World of Dance), Today cohost Natalie Morales, two-time Olympic gold medalist Ashton Eaton, comedian/TV host Nikki Glaser, former Yankees slugger Nick Swisher, comedian Jeff Dye and actress Mena Suvari.

“'Elite ninjas' will be paired as follows with the celebs, serving as both coach and cheerleader: Kevin Bull/Eaton, Kacy Catanzaro/Amell, Drew Drechsel/Swisher, Natalie Duran/Suvari, Daniel Gil/Hough, Jessie Graff/Glaser), Grant McCartney/Morales, Meagan Martin/Dye and Flip Rodriguez/Christensen.

"This celeb edition of American Ninja Warrior will kick off NBC’s third annual night of Red Nose Day programming, which raises money and awareness to help children living in poverty in America and around the world."

Not if my life depended on it . . . .