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"Vengeance is what I am."
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March 30 2009

The New Ratings Game. The article uses Dollhouse as a good example of the new status of dvr viewers. Makes a good argument for keeping it on the air!

...straight, daily ratings just don’t mean much anymore, and they are on the road to meaning nothing at all.

Please listen to this, Fox.
Alot of networks are notorious 4 not giving potentially good shows a break esp the 4 major networks l could count the shows that may have become potential hits but weren't given the chance
I gotta say, I read "The Chopping Block" and "Dollhouse" and got a little worried. Serves me right for not reading my punctuation.
Yeah Jobo, when I read the title it made me nervous. Just goes to show, don't judge an article by its title!
Well to avoid any further worry I've shortened the headline
Actually that is the kind of piece that just annoys me. I think the networks are very aware that their business model is going to have to change but asking them to ignore how they finance their business now because a few years, no one actually knows how many, down the line it'll be different doesn't really make sense. They argue that nothing NBC puts in place of The Chopping Block will do better but considering last weeks episode did a whopping 2.6 million with a 0.9 in the demo I would actually argue that repeats of Law & Order: Criminal Intent may well do quite a bit better.
helcat has it right with regards to how L&O repeats will compare to more Chopping Block. It won't even be close. The whole article falls apart for the simple fact that it hangs on the notion that NBC somehow did something wrong in caneling The Chopping Block. No matter what you think of DVRs and online viewings, that show very much should have been canceled.

It also misses with the contention that the current ratings don't mean much anymore. In fact, they mean more than every other kind of rating anyone can come up with, because they lead to the biggest pile of cash. You can argue that the system is flawed, but it doesn't change the fact that it's still the system the networks are using.
In other news, The Sarah Connor Chronicles is apparently cancelled?

Not sure how reliable that source is though, so don't shoot me.
I'm not even sure why NBC even exists anymore, other than 30 Rock. Dateline I guess?

It seems like, with so many people hooked up via some sort of digital box, it would be easy for networks to get much more massive samples than what they do.
Krusher, this is a terrible and foreseeable news, but some info of the article were a bit off, because the cast, now, should'nt have working in the show, anyway, if the season is over.
DVR ratings are irrelevant.

The only good that can come out of that is if those people start watching the show live.
This from the Sarah Connor chronicles article:

Summer Glau nominated for her second Saturn award for Best Supporting Actress was asked about working again with Joss Wheddon on “The Serving Girl” a short film ballet. Summer said “Right now I am on a series and when you are on a series, that’s all you do”. Two weeks later she is on site filming.

That seems to suggest that there is a set on which Joss is filming "The Serving Girl." Anybody have news on that? Did I miss something?
First I've heard that, bigsofty, but I read it the same way. One of the comments later says Summer and Joss are in Canada filming - although that sounds like she may have confused it with Cabin in the Woods. So yeah.
If this is true, then, we're two missing it.
I think what it ment, she was filming on TSCC two weeks later. Serving Girl is a movie short, not a series.
This article is interesting and also, correct. DVRs and Hulu/online viewing does matter.
I think what it ment, she was filming on TSCC two weeks later.

The article is about evidence that TSCC is dead. Saying she's still filming TSCC (which she isn't) doesn't do that. That she's filming something else, the paragraph seems to suggest, does.

But I haven't found any new info on "The Serving Girl."

I'm supposed to be UPSET that Yet Another Tedious Reality Show got cancelled?
I agree w/BetNoir: I save my upset feelings for scripted television that gets cancelled without a fair chance. I'm not watching any ANY reality TV (however I do watch Joel McHale's Soup because he watches so I don't have to), and wish it would all get cancelled.
If FOX cancelled American Idol there would be no Dollhouse because they'd go bankrupt.

Jury is still out on Dollhouse. It needs to pick up some level of viewers over the next weeks. If there's any way the studio can save it they will, 'cos it's worth a whole lot money longer term for DVD sales, online, licensing blah de blah.
Oh, and with regards to Terminator - Brian Austin Green has signed on for a CW pilot, so I can't see a world where that is coming back. As I said on the Dollhouse ratings thread, there's no way FOX will announce anything, nor Warner. Why? Movie coming out. Called Terminator. Nothing breeds bad PR like your TV show of the same franchise getting cancelled.

[ edited by gossi on 2009-03-30 21:33 ]
When actors in bubble shows sign on to pilots it is often with the understanding that if their show is renewed they won't be available for the new show if it's picked up, and by understanding I mean it's written into the contract. It's a gamble the new show people take but it does mean that an actor signing on for a pilot doesn't automatically mean a show is dead. That being said if Terminator gets another season I think there'll be a lot of shocked people in the business.
Good point, helcat. I just checked and "Body Politic" (BAG's pilot) is in second position to Terminator, so should FOX pick up more Terminator he'll, uhm, be back. That said, FOX would need to be absolutely mental to bring it back given it was struggling to stay above 3 million viewers for some of this season.

[ edited by gossi on 2009-03-30 21:40 ]
If Joss and Summer really are working on The Serving Girl right now... eeeeee. That'd be wonderful. I mean, it seems like the perfect time. They're both done with their respective shows for the moment.

Hopes, stay down!
gossi, what is the usual period to the stations bring the news about the renewed/canceled shows?
Jobo, I suspect they're not. Joss is busy with this thing I like to call a movie film or two one hears.

By the way, the linked article makes little sense to me. I get that DVR to some extent matters, along with Hulu and such. But... The thrust of their article was a reality show got cancelled due to the overnight ratings. Not many people buy reality show DVDs, and repeated viewings online is pretty low for reality. So, uhm. Whilst people might think the overnights matter less as it's the age of the internet, we're still not in the age of the monetised internet yet. The actual premise of the article doesn't quite add up.

Brasilian Chaos Man, FOX announce their fall schedule on May 18th at their upfront presentation. They sell most of their advertising cheaply then. That's a few days after Dollhouse finishes airing.

[ edited by gossi on 2009-03-30 21:54 ]
I think the argument that overnight Nielsen ratings don't matter (as much as they used to) needs to be made. But typically, it is directed at the wrong people.

The people that need to be convinced of this are not the networks, but the advertisers. As long as the advertisers base their ad purchases on those numbers, it makes perfect sense for the networks to pay attention to those numbers. It's the advertisers who really need to wake up and realize that more and more viewers are watching elsewhere and otherwise, and they need to change their ad design (product placement, etc.) and purchases accordingly.
Exactly. In the case of FOX Broadcasting Corp, the only money they make off DOLLHOUSE is from selling TV adverts. They have no other revenue. So to say to them 'Hey, Nielsen doesn't matter!' is an argument which has entirely fallen about before it's even begun.
I'm shure every party involved know that, but change takes time. Especially an old and established medium like TV broadcasts.
I'm not sure they love DVR viewers who skip the adverts.

The DVD revenue will matter most for this show, I suspect. Fox's confidence in that may depend on how much us guys seem to like it.
DVR, iTunes and Hulu does tell FBC how well (or at least better) the show might do in a different timeslot or with a different lead in. It also gives them leverage when talking to 20th about a license fee.
The problem is that the whole network tv system is based around the profits made from advertisers and the Nielsen ratings are so ingrained that it will be like pulling teeth to get the tv industry to stop using it. Until it's proven that a certain number of DVR viewers or Hulu views equals the same impact as an ad airing in front of X million viewers, then there's going to be a lot of resistance to change.

Advertisers are trying to cope with DVR views skipping their ads by adding the TiVo bars to entice viewers to stop and watch the ad. Online, sites like Hulu offers advertisers ways to specific target viewers on a much more detailed demographic basis than they can with ad buys on tv shows. But that's all in it's infancy.

And FBC accepting a loss in ad revenue so eventually down the road Fox Home Entertainment makes money off of DVDs would also be a major change.
I think a big part of the equation is the studios to stop expecting the networks to cover all production costs via the licensing fee.
That's it exactly, helcat. And I think they are definitely headed in that direction.
gossi: Let's be brutally honest here. FOX exists on the back of precisely three shows -- American Idolatry, House and (to a lesser extend) 24.

Hell, CBS pretty much exists off the CSI juggernaut, Survivor and Big Brother, ABC off Lost and Dancing With the Stars, and NBC off The Office.

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